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cop. 2 





A Narrative Account of its Historical Progress, its 
People, and its Principal Interests 


George Washington Smith, M. A. 







5 n 



The richest heritage which shall ever come into our possession is the 
simple story of the struggles, the sacrifices, and the triumphs of the 
men and women our fore-parents who planted in this western wilder- 
ness the home, the school, the church, and the state. 

We shall never know that story in all its fullness and completeness. 
For the noble men and women who opened up the way for civilization 


in all this western country, have long since gone to their reward, and 
they have left meager accounts of all the vicissitudes through which they 
passed when "wilderness was king." 

We may never realize, fully, what it meant for the men and women 
of a century or more ago to leave comfortable homes, devoted friends 
and relatives, the associations of childhood, aye, the graves of their 
dead, and take up their weary march over mountains, across streams, 
through trackless forests, to plant new homes in a wilderness inhabited 
by wild beasts and wilder men. 

It is the purpose of this little volume to reveal a portion of that 
story to our people, and especially to the boys and girls while they are 
yet free from the cares of the graver responsibilities of life. If these 
young people shall ever come into possession of their inheritance, we 
may not fear for the future of our homes nor for the destiny of the 

The tendency of those who gather up the history of a state or of a 
nation is to put much stress upon the political movements and greatly 
to neglect the other phases of a people's life. As individuals and as a 




people we do not have very definite notions of the march of progress in 
the social life of our people; or of the industrial movement which has 
revolutionized all kinds of labor. Likewise we find it difficult to formu- 
late definite notions of our religious and educational advancement. 

But it ought not so to be. We ought to be as deeply interested in 
the unfolding of our industrial life as in the evolution of our political 
history. What could be more profitable, and what more charming than 
the story of the progressive steps by which our home life has moved 
away from the one room log cabin with its chinks and daub, its puncheon 
floor, its open fireplace, its stick chimney, its whitewashed walls, and 
its creaky door upon its wooden hinges ? 

This story may yet be preserved, in part at least, for there are people 
now living in our midst who remember the hand cards, the spinning 
wheel, the reel, the walking frame, the dull thud of the loom, as hour 
by hour the mother toiled in the mystery of shuttle, and sley, and 


treadle, and harness, and warp, and woof. The oldest inhabitant remem- 
bers vividly the shaving horse, the shoemaker's kit, the shuck collar, the 
wooden mold-board, the chain traces, the broadaxe, the sugar camp, 
the reap-hook, the whipsaw, the flail, and the water gristmill. 

And we need only to rummage the attic of the old homestead to find 
the gourd, the piggin, the powder-horn, the bullet-moulds, the hackle, 
the candlestick, the swingling knife, the candle-moulds, the split bottomed 
chair, and the cradle. 

And who has not heard of the campmeeting with its mysterious con- 
versions, its powerful sermons, its prolonged prayers, its stories of men 
who came to scoff but remained to pray ? Did you ever hear the hymns 
lined? Did you ever hear the tune pitched? Did you know that this 
faithful preacher had toiled hard all week at farm work, and studied 
his Bible at night in order to be able to shepherd his flock on Sunday ? 
Did you know the church finances were never "embarrassed" in those 
early days? There are those in nearly every neighborhood who carry in 
a sacred corner of their memory the story of the early church. They 


say little about those days. But they will tell you quietly this beautiful 
story of devotion and sacrifice. 

And what shall we say of the pedagogue of a hundred years ago? 
He was like the seasons he came and went. He had no settled home. 
He taught his school in some abandoned building and ' ' boarded 'round. ' ' 
There were no school-book trusts, and no school-furniture combines in 
those dreamy days. There were no county superintendents to refuse 
certificates, and no school journals to furnish methods and devices. But 
notwithstanding the meager material equipment of the schools, and the 
lack of intellectual preparation in the teacher, there was yet a constant 
movement toward better things. And if there was a lack of scientific 


methods in the educational processes, there was compensation in the 
moral and spiritual vigor instilled into the young people of that day. 
What a charming thing it would be to re-live this life with grandfather 
and grandmother! Who would not enjoy going back to the old home- 
stead even though it be in imagination only. 

To the writer it has seemed not inappropriate to attempt to gather 
up and put into convenient form this simple story of our wonderful 
growth and development. His 'parents were immigrants in the early 
'30 's and the story of the life of those days as it came from father and 
mother is a blessed memory. This traditional knowledge has been sup- 
plemented by a limited amount of original investigation, but the chief 
reliance has been placed in the published histories to which the writer 
has had access. 

The illustrations have been secured after much research and at no 
little expense, and it is hoped they may be found to be of true historical 






















ILLINOIS (1809-1812) 








FARM 136 





i " ; ' - 



























"WAR HISTORY (1861-1898) 







































































OF OIL. 502 


































Abt, Paul W., 1362 

Adams, Robert L., 1528 

Adams, Willard W., 1299 

Adams county, 174 

Adderly, Henry C., 575 

Adles, Max, 923 

Agnew, T. Lee, 780 

Agricultural resources Preponderance 
of rural population, 419; average 
size and price of farms, 420; percent 
of value in lands, buildings, etc., 420; 
number of farms, 421; educational 
agencies, 421 

Aiken, Hiram M., 1233 

Akers, Peter, 385 

Albion, 453, 454, 549 

Alexander, James, 1376 

Alexander, John, 1376 

Alexander, Milton K., 205 

Alexander, Walter C., 569 

Alexander, William M., 425 

Alexander county First settlers near 
Thebes and at Cairo, 425; county 
seat changes, 425 ; Cairo surveyed and 
founded, 427 ; lumber interests and 
levees. 427; Alexander in the war, 
427; industries, railroads and schools, 
428; noted visitors, 429; some prom- 
inent men of the county, 431; the old 
town of Thebes, 431; the visit of the 
"Concord," 431; Alexander county 
court house (illustration) At Cairo, 
424; at Thebes (1845), 426 

Allen. James C., 314, 338, 447, 1608 

Allen, Thomas G., 329 

Allen. William J., 338 

Allio, James H., 1139 

Allyn, Robert. 402. 407 

Almira College, 435 

Alsbrook. Arthur B., 811 

Alsbrook, Robert W., 793 

Alsup. James T.. 1509 

Altgeld. John P., 341 

Alto Pass, 545 

Alton Battalion, 332 

Alton city hall where Lincoln-Douglas 
debate was held (illustration). 302 

Alton Seminary, 383 

"Alton Spectator." 348 

Ames, E. R., 384 

Amity Academy, 434 
Andel, Casimir, 334 
Anderson, Amos, 514 
Anderson, Benjamin H., 902 
Anderson, Charles E., 1040 
Anderson, Cyrus H., 956 
Anderson, George H., 1642 
Andrews, George W., 1106 
Anna, 545 

Anti-Nebraska party, 250 
Antrim. Hugh S., 740 
Apple, Elmer L., 1579 
Applegath, Joseph, 455 
Applegath, (Mrs.) Joseph, 456 
Archer. William B., 436 
Asbury, Isaac M., 1417 
Atherton, William N., 1699 
Attractive architecture, McLeansboro 
(illustrated), 476 

Badgley settlement, 173 

Bailey, Henry, 1540 

Bainbridge, 564 

Baird, Samuel W., 1161 

Baker, Carl, 1135 

Baker, David J., 166, 527 

Baker, E. D., 230, 560 

Bald Knob, 544 

Baldwin, Theron, 372 

Ballance, John W., 603 

Bank of Cairo, 410 

Bank of Illinois (Shawneetown), 125, 
198, 223, 409, 412 

Bank bills (illustrations), Issued by Ed- 
wardsville bank in 1821, 141; by 
Cairo bank, 196 

Banks and banking First land offices 
and banks in Egypt, 409; "Bank of 
Illinois" created, 409; "Bank of 
Cairo," 410; the state banks, 410; 
internal improvement schemes, 411; 
financial complications and embarass- 
ments. 412; the Free Banking Law, 
414; "Wild Cat" banks, 415; one 
hundred and fifteen banks of issue, 
415; effects of national banking sys- 
tem, 416; Illinois Bankers' Associa- 
tion. 416; group No. 10, (Southern 
Illinois), 417; building and loan as- 
sociations, 124, 194, 243, 417 



Banks and banking (illustrations), 
Cairo bank, Kaskaskia, 410; old 
banking house in Shawneetown 
(1840), 413 

Banksou, James, 552 

"Baptist Banner," 348 

Baptists (early), 121, 179 

Barclay, Guy C., 1492 

Barclay, Phil C., 626 

Barker, Daniel P.. 878 

Barker, Lewis, 489 

Barnett, William U., 1482 

Barr, William W., 817 

Barringer, George, 602 

Bartlett, Oscar L., 632 

Bartmes, Frank, 1030 

Barton, John H., 1697 

Bateman, Newton, 255, 393 

Battle of Bad Axe, 191 

Beach, Herbert C., 877 

"Beacon," 445 

Bean, Jerome F., 1694 

Beatte, Ira, 1305 

Bechtold, Herman T., 1193 

Bechtold, William G., 1123 

Beck, Guy, 461 

Beckemeyer, Herman H., 1633 

Becker, Edward P., 1076 

Beecher, Edward, 372 

Beever, John C., 980 

Beever, W. George, 961 

Begg, J. Cyril, 1357 

Belleville, 532, 533, 535 

Bellefontaine, 509 

Bellmann, Emanuel, 1497 

Bennett, John, 941 

Benson, Newton J., 693 

Benton, 467 

Bergen, John G., 178 

Bernreuter, Louis, 1234 

Berry, William, 346 

Beveridge, John L., 340 

Bierer, Frederick C., 662 

Bierer, Frederick G., 663 

Big Four Depot and Y. M. C. A. build- 
ing, Mt. Carmel (illustration), 550 

Big Muddy river, 355 

Biggs, William, 433, 509 

Binder. John F. W., 1056 

Birkbeck, Morris, 143 153, 346, 453, 
454, 456, 457, 559 

Birkner, Edward H., 1182 

Bissell, L. H., 459 

Bissell, William H.. 229, 251 

Bissell (William H.), administration 
Official oath against dueling, 253; 
Bissell-Davis affair, 254 

Black Hawk (portrait), 185 

Black Hawk war, 183 

Blake. Edward L., 1405 

Blake, William B., 1072 

Blanchard, Israel, 322 

Boewe, Ernest E., 1589 

Boggs, Vivian O., 772 

Boisbriant Pierre Duque, 59, 66 

Bon Pas block house, 549 

Bond. Shadrach. 103, 117, 118, 135, 136, 
147, 494, 509, 527 

Bond (Shadrach) administration 
Starting the new machinery, 136; 
Illinois Black Code, 138; in the new 
capital, 139; attempted financial re- 
lief, 139; Military tract, 142; the 
English Prairie settlement, 142; Gov- 
ernor Bond returns to his farm, 147. 

Bond county Two neighborhood forts 
built (1811), 432; the Cox massacre, 
432; Salt works, 433; slavery issue 
in Bond county, 434; schools, 434; 
farms and finances, 435 

Bone, Finis E., 975 

Bonney, John R., 1242 

Borah, William E., 556 

Borah, William N., 556 

Borah, James L., 1636 

Boswell, Charles J., 911 

Bour. Frank. 1534 

Bouthillier, 175 

Bowlesville, 472, 482 

Boys' corn club in Johnson county 
(illustration), 374 

Boyd, Christopher J., 1201 

Boyer, Eli, 531 

Bracy, Benjamin D., 1080 

Bradbury, Presley G., 1536 

Braden, Clark, 390, (389 portrait), 391 

Braden, William E., 1175 

Bradley, Daniel J., 1326 

Bradley, James, 383 

Bradley, Thomas A, 625 

Bramlett. John D., 863 

Brayfield, Benjamin F., 695 

Breese, Sidney, 238. 376, 445 

Breeze, Emanuel, 906 

Brick, 19 

Bridges, Gus H., 699 

Bridges, Harry T., 678 

British occupation, 72 

Britton. Edward G., 657 

Brock, F. M., 1655 

Brookport (Brooklyn), 507 

Brooks. John F., 372 

Brooks, William, 439 

Brosman, William H., 1595 

Brown, Alfred, 1165 

Brown, Austin L, 1327 

Brown, Charles, 982 

Brown, Columbus, 614 

Brown, John J., 1615 

Brown, John M., 630 

Brown, John P., 886 

Brown, Joseph M., 1144 

Brown, R. E., 596 

Brown. Samuel B., 1523 

Brown. William H., 166, 346 

Browning. John L., 1579 

Browning, Levi, 1577 

Browning, Nelson, 667 

Browning, 0. H., 251 

Brownsville's only remaining house, 483 

Bruchhauser, William, 625 

Brush, Daniel H., 1398 

Brush, Samuel T., 1395 

Bryan, Silas Lillard, 338, 503 

Bryan, William Jennings, 338, 504 



Bryant, Emmett 0., 1516 

Bryden, William, 577 

Bucher, Eberhard, 789 

Building and loan associations, 417 

Bunch, Andrew J., 264 

Bundy, Joseph B., 744 

Bundy, William F., 1479 

Burbes, Henry S., 963 

Burch, Elmer, 1261 

Burgess, Hampton S., 1610 

Burkhardt, Henry, 1377 

Burkhardt, John M., 1309 

Burkhardt, Phillip, 1037 

Burkhart, James M., 1049 

Burnett, C. P., 1290 

Burnett, Henry L., 1300 

Burnett, John H., 1104 

Burns, Henry E., 979 

Burton, Charles C., 1170 

Burr, Aaron, 506 

Burris, Hiram H., 692 

Burritt, Eldon G., 386, 435 

Bushnell, D. I., 28 

Butler, William N., 814 

Butner, Andrew J., 862 

Cache river, 355 

Cahokia, 51, 100, 172, 532, 534 

Cahokia Building, view of, 1361 

Cairo, 118, 427 

Cairo City and Canal Company, 427 

Caldwell, Andrew S., 1067 

Caledonia, 519 

Calhoun, Hugh, 528 

Callahan, Ethelbert, 1245 

Ualvin, Allen F., 1197 

Calvin, Robert, 521 

Camp, Abram, 447 

Campbell, Alexander, 555 

Campbell, Bruce A., 958 

Campbell, James R., 335, 477 

Campbell, J. M., 400 

Canal scrip bill ($100) (illustration), 

Cantrell, William S., 830 

Cantril, John, 1706 

Capel, Sigel, 1374 

Capitols (illustrations) At Kaskaskia, 
137; at Vandalia, 139, 462; at Spring- 
field, 204, 338 

Carbondale, 484 

Carbondale College, 397 

Carbondale National Bank, 761 

Carlile, R. A., 818 

Carlin, Thomas, 219 

Carlin, William P., 328 

Carlyle, 443 

Carlyle, James C., 1662 

Carlyle, Thomas, 444 

Carmi. 558, 559 

Carr, John E., 801 

Carrier Mills. 540 

Carroll, Charles, 471 

Carroll, McDaniel, 1371 

Carson, William C., 1119 

Carson, Zenas C., 1108 

Carter, George E., 1571 

Carter, James C., 765 

Carter, Marcus L., 861 

Carterville, 564 

Cartwright, Peter, 384 

Casey, Thomas S., 330 

Casey, William, 489 

Casey, Zadoc, 179, 181, 192, 489, 503 

Caspar, Edward J., 1519 

Casper, Walter J., 1140 

Casteel, Burton L., 893 

Catholic missions (early), 121, 175 

Catlin, Oren, 176 

Cave-in-Rock, 479, 480 

Centerville, 549 

Central City, 505 

Centralia, 505 

Cereal Springs, 564 

Cerre, John Gabriel, 101 

Chaffin, Horatio C., 1253 

Chamberlin, John M., Jr., 574 

Chapman, James C., 1469 

Chapman, Pleasant S., 496 

Chapman, Pleasant T., 750 

Charlottesville, 498 

Chase, Charles H., 717 

Cherry, Thomas L., 707 

Chester, 527 

Chicago Inter-State Exposition, 341 

Cisne, William H., 1661 

Citizens' State & Savings Bank, 1602 

City Hall, Mt. Carmel (illustration), 

City National Bank of Murphysboro, 677 

Civil war period Logan's popularity, 
315; Logan In congress and the field, 
316; state conventions and assemblies, 
316; Knights of the Golden Circle, 
317; Southern Illinois in camp and in 
battle, 322; three years' service, 326; 
one hundred days' service, 332; the 
Alton Batallion, 332; one year ser- 
vice, 332; cavalry service, 333 

Clanahan, Milo R., 1262 

Clark county First settlements, 436; 
Marshall and the national road, 436; 
professional men of the county, 437; 
agricultural and financial, 437 

Clark, George Rogers, 83 (portrait), 
495, 506, 561 

Clark, Harry H., 1622 

Clark, James S., 1079 

Clark, John, 179 

Clark, Thomas A., 1651 

Clark's conquest of the Illinois country 
Conditions in Illinois, 79; Clark's 
expedition, 80; public and private in- 
structions to General Clark, 81; down 
the Ohio, 82; across southern Illinois, 
83 ; capture of Kaskaskia, 85 

Clay City, 441 

Clay county Maysville, oldest settle- 
ment, 439; county seat moved to Lou- 
isville, 439; busy early decade (1840- 
1850), 440; Ohio and Mississippi rail- 
road built. 440 ; founding of churches, 
440; settlement in western sections, 
441; present villages and towns, 441 



Clays, 19 

Clayton, Walter E., 1075 

Clements, Frank, 633 

Clendennin, T. C., 429 

Clinton county Carlyle, first settle- 
ment and county seat, 443; laid out 
in 1818, 443; candidate for state cap- 
ital, 444; Judge Sidney Breese, 445; 
present conditions, 445. 

Clinton, DeWitt, 443 

Cloud, Newton, 234 

Coal, 15, 467 

Cobbett, William, 143 

Cobden, 545 

Cockrum, Matthew W., 1205 

Cole, Charles B., 1248 

Cole, Hermon C., 1248 

Coles' (Edward) administration a man 
with convictions, 148; the slavery is- 
sue, 150; a bitter campaign, 152; the 
result, 155; the Sangamon country, 
157; a distinguished visitor (LaFay- 
ette), 160; the elections of 1826, 163 

Coles, Edward (portrait), 149 

Coles, Frank, Jr., 1593 

Coles, Frank, Sr., 1580 

Collier, Homer, 1084 

Colp, John, 1532- 

Colyer, Walter, 1586 

Comings, Alfred, 727 

Company of the West, 54 

Compton, Levi, 547 

Concrete railroad bridge over Salt creek, 
near Effingham (illustration), 459 

Connaway, Norman W., 831 

Constitutions Territorial bill of 1809, 
109; of 1818 (state), 133; of 1848, 
233; of 1870, 339 

Cook, Daniel P., 164, 510, 527 

Cook, John, 324 

Cook, Marion C., 854 

Cook, Rufus E., 1502 

Cook, Thomas M., 624 

Cooper, John L., 1605 

Copeland, James P., 1589 

Copeland. Louisa, 1592 

Copeland, Minnie L., 1593 

Coughanowr, George W., 784 

County of Illinois, 87-90 

Covington, 552 

Cowan, Thomas J., 797 

Cowling, Edward J., 969 

Cox, Henry, 1493 

Crab Orchard, 564 

Grain, Clain, 977 

Crawford county Lamott,first white 
resident, 446; terrible Hutson massa- 
cre, 446; Palestine, the old county 
seat, 447; Robinson made the county 
seat, 447; school interests, 447; agri- 
culture, 448; coming of railroads and 
oil, 448 ; Oblong, 449 ; the oil industry, 

Crawford, Francis E.. 1156 

Crawford, James W., 1073 

Cremeens, George L., 1195 

Crichton, George K., 687 

Crim, Charles W., 1506 

Cross, John R., 1427 

Crowley, Joseph B., 1511 

Crozat, Anthony, 53, 59, 175 

Cruiser "Concord" iu port at Cairo, (il- 
lustration), 430 

Cruse, Grant, 1154 

Cullorn, Edward, 447 

Cullom, Shelby M., 340 

Cumberland count y County seat 
changes, 451; general facts of inter- 
est, 451; newspapers, 451; the na- 
tional road and railroads, 451 

Cunningham, J. M., 562 

Cunningham, James T., 314 

Curtis, Henry C., 672 

Cutler, Manasseh, 99 

Dailey, Samuel M., 1275 

Daily, Whitson W., 477 

Daniel, Marshall E., 1422 

Dare, Eugene M., 1331 

Daugherty, John E., 1463 

Davenport, George O., 1380 

Davenport, John, 1378 

Davidson, Charles A., 1402 

Davis, Charles C., 1301 

Davis, David, 251 

Davis, Frank M., 1574 

Davis, Henry L., 1332 

Davis, Jefferson, 192 

Davis, Joseph W., 842 

Dawson, Duly M., 674 

Dawson, Lewis A., 769 

Dell'Era, Louis, 1400 

Deneen, Charles S., 343, 385 

Denison, Leon E., 767 

Dense woods, Johnston county (illustra- 
tion), 494 

DeRenault, Phillipe Francois 54, 66 67, 

De Rocheblave, Chevalier, 75, 96 

Dewey, Robert K., 1138 

Dewey, William S., 859 

DeWitt, John C., 713 

DeWitt, William M., 1623 

Diamond Grove Prairie, 173 

Dick, Edgar B., 821 

Dickens, Alfred Tennyson, 431, 537 

Dickens, Charles, 536 

Dickey, Thomas M., 1623 

Dill, John D., 607 

Dillon, Andrew, 1530 

Dillon, Elisha, 1123 

Dillon, Hettie A., 1125 

Dillon, Wilford F., 1478 

Dimmock, Thomas, 216 

Dinwiddie, Charles C., 1354 

Dixon, William. 518 

Dodd, George E., 1513 

Doherty, Anthony, 1460 

Dollins, James J., 330 

Donagliy, Mrs. Minnie J., 778 

Donaghy, William B., 778 

Donaly, James, 1002 

Dorris". William S.. 909 

Dougherty, Henry, 327 



Dougherty, James, 520 

Douglas, Stephen A., 238, 249, 255, 301, 
313, 314, 371, 429 

Dowell, George W., 1450 

Dowell, William C., 1204 

Draper, Newton W., 1468 

Drone, Marion N., 1285 

Dry, Alva R., 847 

Dubois, Jesse K., 251, 497 

Dubois, Toussaint, 497 

DuCoign, Jean Baptiste, 26 

Duff, A. D., 322 

Dulany, William A., 1612 

Dunaway, Samuel W., 1069 

Duncan, George E., 1061 

Duncan (Joseph) administration elec- 
tion as governor, 193; banking legis- 
lation recommended, 194; United 
States and state banks, 195; redemp- 
tion extension, 197; suspension of 
specie payments, 198; State Bank in 
liquidation, 200; internal improve- 
ments, 200; recommendations, 200; 
bill passed over governor's veto, 203; 
capital removed to Springfield, 203; 
also passed over council's veto, 205 

Duncan, Joseph, 157, 165, 169, 185, 192, 
193, 222, 368, 436 

Duncan, Mathew, 344 

Dunn, Joel, 1538 

DuQuoin, 515 

Dwyer, Mrs. W. T., 716 

Dye, John W., 851 

Early-day dwelling of clay and straw, 
Richland county (illustration), 529 

Early River boats, 353 

Early schools, 120 

Early school houses, 369 

Early school teachers, 120, 366, 455 

Easley, William T., 1324 

Easterday, Elmer P., 731 

Easterday, Melancthon, 612 

East St. Louis, 537 

Eaton, Abel C., 914 

Eaton, Samuel B., 898 

Ebers, William, 945 

Echols, Thomas B.. 1613 

Eddy, Henry (portrait), 154, 344, 471 

Edgar, John, 103 

Edwards county Settlement of the Eng- 
lish prairie, 453; Albion founded, 454; 
Judge Walter L. Mayo, 454; Pianka- 
shawtown. 455; an early teacher, 455; 
an early civil engineer, 456; the man- 
ufacture of clay products, 456; in- 
teresting county items, 457. 

Edwards, Cyrus. 371, 376 

Edwards. Francis M., 1104 

Edwards. James E. N.. 1070 

Edwards, James G., 348 

Edwards (Xinian) administration The 
State Bank, 166; an interesting doc- 
trine, 168; school legislation, 169; the 
Winnebago War, 170 

Edwards. Xinian, 109. 164, 533 

Edwards. Ninian W., 373 

Edwards, William 0., 829 

Edwardsville, 344 

Erlingham, 458 

Ettingham county Ewington, first 
county seat, 458; present seat of jus- 
tice, 458; Illinois College of Photog- 
raphy, 459; Teutopolis, 459; land val- 
ues, 459 

Eighteenth Infantry Regiment, 327 

Eighth Illinois Infantry, 335 

Eightieth Infantry Regiment, 329 

Eighty-first Infantry Regiment, 330 

Eighty-seventh Infantry Regiment, 330 

Eis, Gustave E., 1315 

Eldorado, 540 

Eleventh Infantry Regiment, 326 

Elizabethtown, 479 

Elliott, Thomas 0., 1003 

Ellis, John M., 176, 178, 382 

Elvira, 494 

Emmerson, Louis L., 1373 

Emporium Real Estate and Manufactur- 
ing Company, 521 

Enfield, 560 

English, George W., 745 

English Prairie settlements, 144, 453 

Epler, Elbert, 1659 

Equality, 472 

Ernest, Ferdinand, 462, 463, 559 

Ernest (Hanover) colony, 463 

Ernst, Frank, 1097 

Eshleman, Hugh B., 905 

Etherton, James M., 759 

Evans, Joseph T., 1028 

Everest, Harvey W., 407 

Ewing College, 385 

Ewing, W. L. D., 192 

Ewington, 458 

Fager, Daniel B., 1157 

Fairfield, 557 

Faller, Louis, 1239 

Farmer, Robert, 75 

Farmer, William M., 1152 

Farms f illustrations) Oakdale farm, 
Vienna, 493 ; P. S. Chapman farm, Vi- 
enna, 495 ; Wm. E. G. Britton, Mounds, 

Farris, Dawson, M.. 1336 

Fayette county First settlers in the 
county, 461; first capitol at Vandalia, 
461; second capitol, 462; Perryville, 
seat of Fayette county, 462; Ernest, 
or Hanover colony, 463; Fayette and 
Vandalia items. 463 

Feirich, Charles E., 816 

Feldmeier. Samuel H.. 1277 

Felts, Benjamin R.. 1683 

Fern. William .T.. 588 

Ferrell, Benjamin B., 1527 

Ferrell. Hosea V.. 1163 

Ferrell. William F.. 1183 

Feuchter, Charles, 873 

Fifer. Joseph W.. 341 

Fifth Cavalry Regiment, 333 

Fifteenth Cavalry Regiment, 334 

Fifty-fourth Infantry Regiment, 329 



Fifty-sixth Infantry Regiment, 329 

File, Charles H., 1490 

Finley, John Evans, 122 

First American school teacher in Illinois, 

First Cavalry Regiment, 333 

First court of law, 69 

First High School in Illinois, 382 

First magazine in Illinois, 347 

First National Bank of Mound City, 798 

First Republican governor of Illinois, 

Fischer, John G., 1060 

Fisher, George, 117 

Fisher, Orcenith, 553 

Fithian, Charles D., 1550 

Fitzgerrell, Daniel G., 1341 

Fitzgerrell, Evan, 1024 

Flack, John, 513 

Flanagan, Samuel J., 399 

Flannary, Abraham, 425 

Flannary, Joshua, 425 

Flannary, Thomas, 425 

Flannigen, John L., 932 

Flathead and Regulator war, 224 

Fleming, Richard G., 1387 

Fleming, R. K., 346 

Flora, 441 

Flower, George, 144, 346, 454, 457 

Flower, Richard, 144, 145 

Fly, Jesse \J., 697 

Ford, J. B., 919 

Ford, Theodore M., 618 

Ford, Thomas, 166, 348, 510 

Ford, William H., 1143 

Ford (Thomas) administration Illinois 
and Michigan Canal progresses, 223; 
a brighter outlook, 223; some social 
problems, 224 

Fordham, Elias Pym, 454, 456 

Foreman, Ferris, 230, 231, 463 

Forester, John, 892 

Fort Chartres, 54, 66, 71 and 72 (illus- 

Fort Clark, 174 

Fort Crevecoeur, 45 

Fort Dearborn (Chicago) in 1812 (illus- 
tration), 114 

Fort Dearborn massacre, 112 

Fort Edwards, 115 

Fort Gage, 527 

Fort Massac. 506, 507 (illustration), 508 

Fortieth Infantry Regiment, 328 

Forty-third Infantry Regiment, 328 

Forty-eighth Infantry Regiment, 328 

Fouke, Philip B., 327 

Four Mile Prairie, 513 

Fourteenth Cavalry Regiment, 334 

Fourth Illinois Infantry (Spanish-Amer- 
ican war). 334 

Fox, Erwin D., 1320 

Fraim, Oliver M., 739 

Frankfort, 467 

Franklin county Cave township first 
settled, 465; pioneer mills erected, 
465; early-time items. 466; slaves and 
land, 466; Benton, the county seat, 

467; Logan and Douglas, 467; growth 

of coal interest, 467 
Fraser, Alexander S., 643 
i'ree Banking law, 244, 414 
French, Augustus C., 255 
French (Augustus C.) administration 

End of Flathead and Regulator war, 

226; Mexican war, 228; Mormons, 228; 

constitution of 1848, 233; 111. Cent. 

R. R., 237; a new banking system, 243 
French, D. P., 378 
French, George H., 573 
French villages, religious life of, 60 
Frier, Harry L., 1006 
Friganza, Commodore, 1392 
Friganza, Willis T., 1393 
Fuller, R. C., 1384 
Funkhauser, John J., 330 
Fyke, Edgar E., 1542 

Gahm, George L., 1557 

Galbraith, John T., 579 

Galena, 175 

Gallatin county The county's first 
white settler, 469; a land of floods and 
levees, 470; the Wilsons, 470; Gen- 
eral Thomas Posey, 471; other promi- 
nent men, 471; town of Equality, 
479; a pioneer industry, 479 

Gallatin County Bank, 1702 

Galligan, James H., 890 

Uarretson, James, 509 

Garrison, I. L., 1624 

Gas, 18 

Gasaway, Americus, 1294 

Gaskins, Edward, 833 

Gaskins, John T., 858 

Gaskins, Wilson, 825 

Gatewood, William J., 371 

Gauen, Albert, 1054 

Gauen, Roy E., 1032 

Gee, Harl L., 1330 

Gee, Knox, 1503 

Gen. Grant and Gen. McClelland at 
Cairo (1861) (illustration), 323 

Geology Civilization based on, 2; Gen- 
eral scientific phase, 3; eras, 4; time 
divisions, 5; Southern Illinois, 5; 
Glacial period, 7 

George, William E., 1200 

Georgetown, 552 

Gerhart, Thomas S., 1225 

Gerlach, Jacob P., 578 

Gerould. Theodore F., 1293 

Gibbs, William L, 226 

Gibson, Elijah P., 1271 

Gibson, James Walter, 1158 

Gibson, James W., 1421 

Gilbert, Edward L., 795 

Gilbert. Miles F.. 726 

Gilbreath, Whitney, 933 

Gill, E. E., 1058 

Gillespie, Joseph, 39, 314 

Gillespie. Robert E., ?72 

Gilliam. William H.. 1304 

Glass. William T., 1339 

Glynn, John P., 600 



Goddard, George A., 682 

Goddard, Henry T., 1677 

Goddard, Reuben J., 924 

Golconda (bird's eye view), 517 

Goodman, Thomas B., 1115 

Gordon, Abram G., 1172 

Gordon, George A., 1497 

Gordon, H. S., 1497 

Goudy, John, 376 

Grammar, John, 542 

Grand Rapids dam, Mt. Carmel, 356 
(illustration), 551 

Grand Tower, 484 

Grant, Ulysses S., 324 

Grant, William A., 997 

Grant, William H., 822 

Gravier, James, 49 

Greaney, William P., 826 

"Great Medicine Water," 518 

Great Western Railway Company, 238 

Green, Earl, 1352 

Green, Reed, 842 

Green, William H., 1353 

Green, William P., 609 

Green, Judge William P., 1240 

"Greenup Tribune," 451 

Greenville College, 386, 435 (illustra- 

Grierson, Benjamin H., 333 

Grissom, William M., 1207 

Griswold, Stanley, 109 

Gum, George W., 1489 

Gun "Capt. Billy Smith," Cairo (illus- 
tration), 428 

Gunboats at Cairo (illustration), 325 

"Gusher" near Robinson, Crawford 
county (illustration), 449 

Hacker, Fanny P., 429, 1297 

Hacker, John S., 543 

Haertling, G. H., 1575 

Hale, James I., 628 

Hale, John A., 584 

Hall, Frank H., 422 

Hall, Henry R., 1319 

Hall, James, 344, 347 

Hall, William B., 880 

Hall, William 0., 1455 

Halliday, Samuel, 1692 

Hambleton, W. L.. 522 

Hamilton, Charles E., 658 

Hamilton, James W., 1364 

Hamilton College, 477 

Hamilton county First settlers, 475; 
Judge Stelle's pioneer pictures, 475; 
which Rector was massacred, 476; 
town of McLeansboro, 476; as to edu- 
cation, 477; James R. Campbell, 477; 
general information, 477 

Hamlin, John, 174 

Hammond, Jackson L., 756 

Hansen, Nicholas, 151 

Hardin county Picturesque and pros- 
perous. 478 ; lead mines and towns, 
478; first settlers, 479; Cave-in-Rock 
described, 480 

Hardin, John H., 229 

Hardy, John G., 690 

Hardy, Solomon, 178 

Hargrave, Jean, 796 

Harker, Oliver A., 1100 

Harlan, James D., 1617 

Harmon, John, 385 

Harper, John B., 1539 

Harreld, William E., 1344 

Harrington, Lawrence R., 685 

Harris, Clyde D., 774 

Harris, Gilham, 555 

Harris, Isaac, 555 

Harris, Thomas W., 329 

Harrisburg, 540 

Harrison, Francis O., 1220 

Harriss, Judson E., 938 

Hart, Samuel, 1096 

Hart, William H., 1274 

Hartwell, Dausa D., 1038 

hartwell, DeWitt T., 1022 

Hasenjaeger, Henry, 808 

Hatch, O. M., 251 

Hawkins, Louis A., 1324 

Hawks, Walter S., 322 

Hay, W. D., 560 

Haynie, Isham N., 328 

Heard, Montreville, 1444 

Hearn, William O., 733 

Heckert, Henry F., 1226 

Helm, Douglas W., 1670 

Hemenway, Justin G., 884 

Henderson, W. H., 222 

Henry, James D., 185 

Henson, John H., 1250 

Herbert, Oscar L., 87fi 

Herrin, 564 

Herrin, Paul D., 1118 

Hersh, E. W., 1065 

Hess, L. Jasper, 805 

Hester, James S., 648 

Hewitt, Francis M., 1098 

Heyde, John B., 1055 

Hickman, George A., 749 

Hicks, Stephen G., 231, 328 

Higher education First High School in 
Illinois, 382; Southern Illinois Col- 
lege, 387; state aid and legislation, 
392; Southern Illinois high schools, 
394; Southern Illinois Normal Uni- 
versity, 395; work of the State Teach- 
ers' Association, 395; Legislature cre- 
ates Normal University, 396; educa- 
tional conventions, 397; Carbondale, 
site of Illinois Normal University, 
400; University opened, 402; build- 
ing burned, 404; the New Main Build- 
ing, 406; general review, 407 

Hight, James F., 758 

Hileman, George T., 694 
Hill, William S., 732 

Hill, William H., 1425 

Hill, Robert P., 1089 

Hillman, A. C., 378 

Hill's fort, 432 

Hines, Frank B., 386, 1685 

Hirons, John D.. 1237 

Hodges, Edmund J., 1485 



Hoffman, Francis A., 251 

Hoffman, George, 1626 

Hoffmeier, Fred, 1316 

Hofsommer, Charles W., 1114 

Hogue, James H., 1466 

Hogue, Wilson Thomas, 386 

Holbrook, Darius B., 427 

Holcomb, Matthew R., 1562 

Holdoway, John A., 897 

Holshouser, William 0., 1480 

"Homestead Exemption Law," 235 

Hood, Fred, 752 

Hoopes, Thomas F., 1432 

Hopkins, Frank, 585 

Hopp, Edward J., 867 

Hord, George Y., 1511 

Horn, Henry, ST., 985 

Horn, Mary F., 987 

Horn, Thomas, 987 

Hostettler, Henry W., 1244 

Hotels (illustrations) Old Sweet hotel, 
Kaskaskia, 162; the Rawlings hotel, 
Shawneetown, 163; old Jonesboro ho- 
tel, headquarters of Lincoln and 
Douglas (1858), 542 

Hovey, Charles E., 396 

Howe, Elbridge Gerry, 176 

Howell William H., 1472 

Hubbard, Adolphus Frederick, 164 

Hubbard, William H., 1134 

Huddleston Orphans' Home, 380 

Hudgens, Hiram A., 677 

Hudgens, John B., 696 

Hudson, Ira J., 719 

Huegely, John, Jr., 1310 

Huegely, Julius, 1173 

Huffman, G. Riley, 721 

Huffman, George H., 734 

Hughes, Aurelius G., 737 

Hull, John, 407 

Hull, Nathaniel, 509 

Hundley, Robert M., 331 

Hunsaker, George, 542 

Huntsinger, Harrison P., 894 

Huthmacher, Charles C., 1062 

Huthmacher, George, 725 

Hynes, Thomas W., 433 

"Illinois Advocate and Lebanon Jour- 
nal," 385 

Illinois Agricultural College A part of 
the General System, 376; created by 
the state, 377; school opens in 1866, 
378; uncertainty as to status, 379 

Illinois and Michigan Canal, 202, 223 

Illinois Bankers' Association, 416 

Illinois Central Railroad, 238 

Illinois College, 385 

Illinois College of Photography, 459 

Illinois country, 62 

"Illinois Emigrant," 344 

"Illinois Gazette." 344 

"Illinois Herald," 344 

"Illinois Intelligencer." 346 

"Illinois Monthly Magazine," 347 

"Illinois Republican," 346 

Illinois State Trust Company, 1361 

Illinois S t a t e The constitution o f 
1818; first state election, 135 

Illinois Teachers' Association, 372 

"Illinois Temperance Herald," 348 

Indiana Territory Harrison and the In- 
dian problems, 104; slavery in the 
territory, 105; erection of, 108; War 
of 1812, 111; matters of local in- 
terest, 115; a second-class territory, 
116; a retrospect, 119; services of 
Nathaniel Pope, 129; the constitu- 
tional convention, 131; immigration 
to Illinois, 126; Indian trails, 357 

Indians Great families, 23; Illinois In- 
dians, 24; great chiefs, 25 

Industrial League of Illinois, 376, 395 

Ingersoll, Ezekiel J., 406, 650 

Ingersoll, Robert G., 471 

Inglis, Samuel M., 435 

Ingraham, Charles E., 703 

Internal Improvements, 201, 221, 229 

Irvin, Cyrus H., 1190 

Irvington, 378 

Isley, Albert E., 1491 

Jackson, Charles A., 809 

Jackson county Settled early part of 
nineteenth century, 481; salt indus- 
try founded, 482; Illinois Central 
brings settlers, 483; Carbondale 
platted, 484; coal mining, 484; Grand 
Tower, 484; Murphysboro, 485 

Jackson, Earl B., 1035 

Jackson, James W., 1072 

Jacksonville, 178 

James, Bennett, 1674 

James, Fountain E., 1576 

James, George W., 715 

Jasper county Newton, the county 
seat, 486; population and agriculture, 
486; villages in county, 486; Mt. Ver- 
non made the county seat, 489; mili- 
tary record, 490; car shops, 490; ju- 
dicial and legal center, 490; Mt. Ver- 
non of today, 491; facts of interest, 

Jenkins, David P., 334 

Jenkins, Henry H., 807 

Jennelle, John J., 1464 

Jeremiah, Thomas, 1212 

Jesuits, 60, 80 

Jinnette, Ezekiel R., 1418 

Jo Daviess county, 174 

Johns, Frederick A., 332 

Johnson, Charles, 1638 

Johnson, Edgar F., 1434 

Johnson, Matthew, 75 

Johnson, Stephen A., 1039 

Johnson. William L., 910 

Johnson county Created by Governor 
Edwards. 492; agriculture and stock 
raising, 492; early settlers, 494; sla- 
very contest (1823-4), 494; Major 
Andrew J. Kuykendall, 495, Clark 
passed through the county, 495 

Johnston City, 564 

Johnston, James F., 1142 



Johnston, William H., 708 

Joliet, 36, 40 

Jones, Alfred H., 1486 

Jones, Emsly, 481 

Jones, Gabriel, 527 

Jones, James, 348 

Jones, James M., 966 

Jones, Obadiah, 109 

Jones, Robert S., 1541 

Jones, Thomas X., 1470 

Jones, William, 179 

Jones, William C., 1563 

Jones' fort, 432 

Jonesboro, 542 

Jonesboro College, 385 

"Jonesboro Gazette," 348 

Joplin, James M., 1236 

Joppa, 508 

Jordan, Joshua, 547 

Jordan brothers, 561 

Journalism First Illinois newspapers, 
344; slavery question stimulates 
journalism, 346; uncertainty of pio- 
neer journalism, 346; able old-time 
editors, 347; later stimulating issues, 
348; papers forced to suspend, 348; 
founded prior to 1880, 349 

Judd, Norman B., 251 

Judy, Samuel, 173 

Kane, Elias Kent, 157, 527 

Kane, W. C., 868 

Kansas-Xebraska act, 249 

Karraker, Jacob, 1191 

Karraker, O. M., 1192 

Karraker, Thomas N., 992 

Karsteter, William R., 968 

Kaskaskia, 49, 102, 110, 172, 524 

Kaskaskia, Capture of, 85 

Kaskaskia eighteenth-century mill, ruins 

of (illustration), 120 
Kaskaskia Presbyterian church, 176 
Kaskaskia view from Fort Gage, 342 
Kaskaskias, 24 
Kasserman, Henry M., 1443 
Kasserman, Rudolph J., 1405 
Keefe, David E., 1481 
Keen, Frank B., 683 
Keen, John, Jr., 1646 
Keen, Raab D., 1664 
Keener, George W., 332 
Keith, Leroy G., 712 
Keith, L. D., 665 
Keller, P. J., 964 
Kellogg, A. N., 349 
Kellogg, Elisha, 173 
Kellogg, Seymour, 173 
Kellogg, William Pitt, 312 
Kelly, Daniel E., 701 
Kelly, George H., 1057 
Kennedy, George, 1043 
Kennedy, George, Sr., 1043 
Kennedy, James B., 855 
Kennedy, Marcus L., 904 
Keokuk (chief), 183 
Kerley, Thomas B., 666 
Keys' Willard. 174 

Kickapoo Indians, 25, 102 

Kidd, Robert, 509 

Kimmel, Singleton H., 344 

Kimzey, Loranzey D., 922 

King, Freeman, 942 

Kinney, William, 180, 205 

Kirkham, Robert, 329 

Kirkpatrick, Cornwall E., 773 

Kirkpatrick, R. D., 973 

Kitchell, Joseph, 447 

Kneffner, William C., 332 

Knights of the Golden Circle, 318, 322, 


Knoph, Aden, 1272 
Knox, James, 250 
Koch, Fred J., 1105 
Koenigsmark, Alois J., 1048 
Koenigsmark, Jacob J., 1047 
Koenigsmark, John J., 930 
Koenigsmark, Thomas, 1046 
Koennecke, Frederick H., 1415 
Koerner, Gustavus, 246, 251, 340, 533, 

534 (portrait) 
Kohn, H. H., 640 
Kramer, Edward C., 571 
Kramer, James H., 1634 
Kuhls, Frank G., 1133 
Kuny, Frederick J., 1704 
Kuykendall, Andrew J., 495 

Lackey, George W., 1437 

Lacky, William A., 882 

LaFayette, 160, 161 (portrait) 

Lamer, Charles R., 1192 

Lamott creek, 446 

Lamott prairie, 446 

Land, George L., 1702 

Langan, Peter T., 644 

Lansden, John M., 1672 

Largent, W. W., 871 

LaSalle, 41 

Latham, S. W., 881 

Lauder, Hugh, 567 

Laughlin, William T., 783 

La Ville de Maillet (Peoria), 174 

Lawler, Michael K., 231, 327, 471 

Lawrence county Pioneer French set- 
tlers, 497; the deep snow and milk 
sickness, 498; schools, 498; Charlottes- 
ville, 498; old trails across the coun- 
ty, 498; Lawrenceville, the county 
seat, 499; oil and gas wells, 499 

Lawrenceville, 499 

Lawrenceville High School (illustra- 
tion), 499 

Layman, Thomas J., 300, 1065 

Lead, 19, 174, 478 

Leavitt, J. A., 385 

Lebanon Seminary, 384 

Leib, Daniel, 185 

Lemen, James, Sr., 509 

Lengfelder Brothers, 1520 

Lengfelder, Charles R., 1521 

Lengfelder, Gustavus A., 1521 

Lengfelder. Louis F., 1522 

Lentz, E. Gilbert. 1112 

Leonhard. Adolph M., 1452 



Leppo, Frank T. I., 1220 

Lesemann, Philip B., 1260 

Levett's Prairie, 439 

Levy, Isaac K., 568 

Levy, Mike, 1411 

Lewis, Albert W., 1318 

Lewis, Cassie B., 1177 

Lewis, Elijah, 1066 

Lewis, John S., 1013 

Lewis, Steven C., 1273 

Libke, Andrew K., 1667 

Lightner, Alfred S., 1631 

Lillard, Joseph, 122 

Lime, 17 

Limestone, 16 

Lincoln, Abraham, 192, 204, 251, 255, 
304, 306, 308, 309 (portrait), 310 

Lincoln-Douglas debate Arrangements 
for, 256; some matters of local inter- 
est, 257; political situation in South- 
ern Illinois in 1858, 258; at Cairo, 
261; Lincoln in Anna and Jonesboro, 
263; at Jonesboro, 267; Douglas at 
Benton, 300; last debate at Alton, 301 

Lindly, Cicero J., 1546 

Linegar, David T., 314 

Lingle, Fred L., 597 

Lingle, Willis E., 1134 

Link, Robert R., 917 

Lippincott, Thomas, 177 

Lippitt, William D., 907 

Lockwood, Jesse C., 476 

Log school house (illustration), 371 

Logan, John A., 231, 255, 314, 315, 316 
(portrait), 327, 467, 471, 485, 538, 539, 

Logan, Thomas M., 1148 

Long, James M., 1321 

Looney, William A., 615 

Lord, Hugh, 75 

Louisiana, 61 

Louisville, 439, 441 

Lovejoy (Elijah Parish) and his mar- 
tyrdom a moral hero, 209; Lovejoy 
becomes an editor, 210; constitutional 
right, 211; "Observer" moved to Al- 
ton, 211; mob destroys presses, 212; 
Lovejoy a martyr, 215 

Lovejoy monument (illustration), Al- 
ton, 218 

Lovejoy, Owen, 251 

Lowe, Ausby L., 1435 

Lowis, William W., 1120 

Lufkin, John E., 1179 

Lusk, Jack. 869 

Lyerly, Andrew J., 627 
f Lyerly, William D., 729 

Lyle. John D., 1198 

Lynch, John, 531 

Lynn. Charles, 1705 

Lyon, Charles M.. 1431 

McAdams, Clark, 28 
McAdams, William, 28, 30 
McBaen. William. 507 
McCall, Daniel. 730 
McCann, Oria M., 1661 

McCann, Patrick S., 1147 

McCarley, Herman, 896 

McCartney, Marcus N., 1566 

McCaslin, Warren E., 1130 

McClernand, John A., 471 

McUintock, Charles E., 779 

McClun, J. E., 250 

McClure, Chester A., 1669 

McClure, John, 510 

McClusky, Frederick W., 1291 

McCollum, Harvey D., 1258 

McConnell, Murray, 205 

McCormick, Alphouso, 1159 

McCreery, Walker W., 1286 

McCullom, Vandalia, 463 

McCullough, J. S., 243 

McElroy, Isaac N., 983 

McElvain, Robert J., 1100 

McEwing, William, 515 

McFall, William W., 1322 

McFarlan, James, ST., 479 

McGehee, Moses P., 1264 

McGoughey, John E., 1257 

McGuyer, John B., 1536 

Mcllrath, Robert J., 962 

Mclntyre, Aorman, 994 

McKeaig, George W., 331 

McKee, John F., 1052 

McKendree College, 384 

McLaren, Archibald B., 1254 

McLean, John, 135, 157, 471 

Madison county, 116 

Maeys, Edward, 1627 

Maeys, Jacob, 1627 

Mahan, I. S., 378 

Main street, Elizabethtown (illustra- 
tion), 482 

Maps Showing royal grants, 33; Amer- 
ican Bottom (French villages), 56; 
Clark's route from Fort Massac to 
V incennes, 91; settled portions of Il- 
linois in 1812, 113; first fifteen state 
counties (1818), 127; showing vote on 
slavery question (1824), 158 

Marberry, Oscar J., 447 

Marest, Gabriel, 50 

Marion, 564 

Marion county Agriculture and live 
stock, 502 ; Old Salem, the county seat, 
503; "State Policy" abandoned, 503; 
father of William J. Bryan, 503; Gen. 
James S. Martin, 504; the present Sa- 
lem and Centralia, 504; late discovery 
of oil, 505 

Marker of Lincoln -Douglas debate at 
Jonesboro (illustration), 266 

Marks, Daniel, 451 

Marlow, James T., 903 

Marquette, 35, 40 

Marquette among the Indians, (illus- 
tration), 36 

Marshall, 436 

Marshall. Charles, 1483 

Marshall. John, 125. 471 

Marshall, John A., 321 

Martin, Edward A.. 1639 

Martin, George E., 616 



Martin, James H., 676 

Martin, James S., 331, 504 

Martin, Sidney C., 654 

Massac county 226; Old Fort Massac, 
506; Metropolis laid off, 506; Brook- 
port (formerly Brooklyn), 507; Joppa, 
508; drainage and agriculture, 508; 
the old fort to be preserved, 508 

Mason, Charles H., 1021 

Mason, Tice D., 1595 

Matheny, John W., 1413 

Mather, Thomas, 195, 205, 527 

Mathews, John, 176 

Mathews, W. A., 385 

Mathis, George W., 655 

Mathis, John B., 887 

Mathis, John P., 743 

Mathis, Robert D., 798 

Matteson (Joel A.) administration 
Matteson elected governor, 246; Illi- 
nois Central built, 247 ; slavery agita- 
tion, 247; Canal scrip fraud, 248; 
state and national politics, 249 

Matthews, William A., 654 

Maulding, Ambrose, 489 

Maxey, Bennett M., 1180 

Maxey, James C., 490 

Maxey, Moss, 1027 

Maxey, Walter S., 1349 

May, Leonidas J., 1094 

Maynard, Charles E., 1504 

Mayo, Walter L., 454 

Maysville, 439 

Meads, Joseph L., 582 

Medill, Joseph, 251 

Meirink, Bernard J., 1219 

Menard, Pierre, 117, 135, 141, 367, 521 

Mermet, P. J., 50 

Merrifield. Walter E., 1391 

Merritt, Wesley, 504 

Meserve, Frank C., 1169 

Methodists (early), 122, 178 

Methodist Episcopal church, Mt. Carmel 
(illustration), 548 

Metropolis, 507 

Meyer, Frantz J., 1033 

Meyer, George L., 1333 

Meyer, H. A., 435 

Mick, Robert, 1420 

Military Bounty lands, 173 

Miller, Alexander W., 1206 

Miller. Andrew E., 591 

Miller, Ernest F., 1087 

Miller, James, 251. 255 

Miller, Jesse E., 1673 

Miller, John P.. 1326 

Miller, John W., 1111 

Miller, Robert H., 1087 

Miller, Sidney B., 1475 

Mills, Commodore, 1191 

Mills. Charles W.. 673 

Mills, Virgil W., 1641 

Millspaugh, Albert C., 1354 

"Miner's Journal." 347 

Mitchell. H. C., 563 

Mitchell, Henry C., 1064 

Mitchell. James C., 1045 

Mitchell, John W., 539, 540 

Mitchell. Samuel M., 563 

Moffat, Thomas, 1390 

Mohlenbrock, William, 1278 

Molitor, John, 1229 

Monken, George J., 1102 

Monk's Mound, 28 

Monroe county First American set- 
tlers, 509; Jefferson's estimate of 
James Lemen, 509; old Lemen fort 
(second brick house in Illinois), 510; 
Thomas Ford and Daniel P. Cook, 510; 
first county court, 510; schools and 
slaves, 511; old French land grants, 
511; Elder Peter Rogers, 511; Col. 
William R. Morrison, 512 

Mooneyham, James P., 637 

Moore, Carroll, 1170 

Moore, Hosea H., 1630 

Moore, Henry W., 234 

Moore, James. 509 

Moore, John, 222 

Moore, John W., 583 

Moore, Risdon M., 331 

Moore, Thomas L., 553 

Moorehouse, Thaddeus, 528 

Moorman, Howard, 1029 

Morgan county, 173 

Morgan, Ambert D., 646 

Morgan, Charles E., 947 

Morgan, Harry P., 1561 

Morgan, James D., 326 

Morgan, Lewis C., 1343 

Mormons, 222, 224, 228 

Morony, James J., 1128 

Morray, Damie, 652 

Morris, Buckner S., 252 

Morrison, Joseph, 527 

Morrison, William R., 231, 512 

Moss, Douglass, 1507 

Moss, Harry C., 1600 

Mound City, 520 

Mounds, 523 

Mt. Carmel, 549, 551 

Mt. Vernon, 173, 179, 489 

Mozley, Norman J., 668 

Muer, A. C., 175 

Mulcaster, John G., 761 

Munndell, Cornelius W., 1531 

Murphy, Penina O., 1654 

Murphy, William K., 1652 

Murphysboro, 482, 485 

Murray, Hugh V.. 1505 

Murrie. William J., 664 

Musselman, Edward, 943 

Nashville, 553 

"Nashville" at the Golconda wharf (il- 
lustration), 518 

National Cemetery near Mound City (il- 
lustration), 522 

National road, 358, 360, 437. 451. 464 

National Stock Yards National Bank, 

Nauman. John A., 1472 

Nauvoo, 224, 228 

Needham, Daniel, 1160 



Needles, Thomas B., 1411 

Neely, George W., 332 

Nelson, Elijah, 528 

Nelson, Snowden B., 955 

Nesbitt, William A., 660 

Newbold, Joseph H., 348 

Newby, E. W. B., 232 

New Chartres, 55, 68, 69 

New counties, 116, 118, 124, 141 

New Design, 509 

New Grand Chain, 523 

Newland, H. W., 322 

Newlin, Enoch E., 1446 

Newlin, LeRoy, 1518 

Newlin, Thomas J., 1516 

Newton, 486 

Newton, Lawrence G., 711 

Niebur, B. Clemens, 1095 

Nimms, Alexander J., 330 

Ninety-seventh Infantry Regiment, 330 

Ninety-eighth Infantry Regiment, 330 

Ninth Illinois Infantry, 335 

Nixon, Madison G., 1019 

Noleman, Frank F., 1457 

Norris, George W., 681 

Norton, Jesse O., 250 

Northwest Territory Civil government 
north of the Ohio, 98; ordinance of 
1787 passed, 99; government organ- 
ized, 100; conditions in Illinois, 100; 
local government, 103 

Oakley, Charles, 205 

Oblong, 449 

"Oblong Oracle," 449 

O'Connor, Ephraim, 172 

O'Gara Coal Company, The, 1224 

Ogilvie, Lewis, 1598 

Oglesby, Richard J., 251, 340, 341 

Ohio valley, struggle for, 64 

Oil, 449, 499, 505 

Oil in transit Lawrence county (illustra- 
tion), 500 

Oil territory. A common sight in (illus- 
tration), 450 

Okawville, 554 

Old Illinois Agricultural College, Irving- 
ton (illustration), 379 

Old Kaskaskia disappears, 342 

"Old Lemen Fort," 510 

Oldest Illinois publication (facsmilie of 
"Illinois Herald,") 345 

Olmsted, 523 

Olney. 528 

One Hundred Ninth Infantry Regiment, 

One Hundred Tenth Infantry Regiment, 

One Hundred Eleventh Infantry Regi- 
ment. 331 

One Hundred Seventeenth Infantry 
Regiment, 331 

One Hundred Twentieth Infantry Regi- 
ment, 331 

One Hundred Twenty-eighth Infantry 
Regiment. 331 

One Hundred Thirty-first Infantry Regi- 
ment. 331 

One Hundred Thirty-sixth Infantry Regi- 
ment, 332 

One Hundred Forty-third Infantry Regi- 
ment, 332 

One Hundred Forty-fourth Infantry 
Regiment, 332 

One Hundred Forty-fifth Infantry Regi- 
ment, .332 

One Hundred Forty-ninth Infantry Regi- 
ment, 332 

One Hundred Fiftieth Infantry Regi- 
ment, 332 

Ozburn, Harry 0., 1602 

Ozburn, John L., 611 

Ozment, Marshall, 1042 

Page, Oliver J., 1514 

Palestine, 447 

Palmer, Elihu J., 399 

Palmer, John M., 251, 258, 305, 338 

Palmyra, 549 

Pape, Gustavus, 526, 952 

Parish, John J., 846 

Parish, William H., 844 

Park, Edmund C., 1246 

Park, Roswell, 529 

Parker, Charles A. C., 781 

Parker, George N., 1424 

Parkinson, Daniel B., 407, 1602 

Parmly, Walter D., 1459 

Parrish, Braxton, 466 

Parsons, George, 1188 

Parsons, S. H., 99 

"Patent inside," 349 

Pautler, Nicholas B., 972 

Pavey, C. W., 341 

Pavey, Louis G., 1185 

Payne, William S., 1340 

Pearce, Jo R., 852 

Peck, Ebenezer, 205 

Peck, John M., 153, 348, 371, 372, 376, 
382, 534 

Peeler. Samuel D., 1414 

Pellett, Ezra B., 794 

Peltier, P. P.. 511 

Penvler, Hugh, 1495 

Peoria, 174 

Permanent settlements Kaskaskia set- 
tled, 49; grants of land, 52; war and 
progress, 58 

Perrine, William A., 1312 

Perry county Pioneer settlers and inci- 
dents, 513; Pinckneyville selected as 
county seat, 514; first circuit court, 
515; DuQuoin and Tamaroa, 515 

Perry. Enos. 670 

"Perry County Times," 515 

Perry'ville, 462 

Personeau. Etienne. 532 

Pflasterer. Frank. 963 

Phillips, A. J.. 261. 264 

Phillips, David L.. 261 

Phillips. D. W.. 378 

Phillips. John E.. 1386 

Phillips. William H., 619 

Phillips. Winfield S.. 1371 

Philp. Harry 0., 1303 

Piankashawtown. 455 



Piasa bird, 32, 38 (illustration) 

Piatt, Hiram H., 1388 

"Picket Guard," 349 

Pickrell, Andrew J., 775 

Picquet, Joseph, 1712 

Pictographs on Illinois river bluffs, (il- 
lustrations), 31 

Pier, Charles S., 1688 

Piercy, Willis D., 1284 

Piggott's fort, 509 

Fillers, George W., 835 

Pinckneyville, 514 

Pinkel, Armin B., 1378 

Pinkstaff, John, 498 

Pioneer monument at Old Kaskaskia, 
(illustration), 343 

"Pioneer of the Valley of the Missis- 
sippi," 348 

Pippin, W. H., 1252 

Pitner, Homer W., 1643 

Pixley, Harvey F., 1265 

Plummer, Walter B., 1453 

Pontiac, 26, 73 

Poorman, Andrew J., Jr., 1606 

Pope county Sarahville (Golconda), 
the county seat, 516; educational and 
social, 516; noted personages, 517; 
"Great Medicine Water," 518; statis- 
tics, 518 

Pope, B. F., Sr., 823 

Pope, Benjamin W., 823 

Pope, Nathaniel, 109, 128, 129, 366, 444 

Pope, Payton S., 621 

Pope, Pleasant N., 837 

Porter, Edward K., 800 

Porterfield, John F., 1279 

Portraits George Rogers Clark, 83; 
Abraham Lincoln, 309 ; John A. Logan, 
316; Edward Coles, 149; Henry Eddy, 
154; Lafayette, 161; Black Hawk, 
185; Clark Braden, 389; Peter White, 
473; James C. Maxcy, 488; Gustavus 
Koerner, 534; Samuel Westbrook, 539 

Posey, Thomas, 471 

Post, Frank H., 1031 

Potter, William O., 1010 

Potthast, Fred, 1213 

Powell, Alfred E., 786 

Powell, H. K., 1155 

Powell, William H., 251 

Prairie areas, 21 

Prairie du Pont, 535 

Prairie du Rocher, 55, 59 (winter view) 

Prehistoric people Evidences of, 27 ; the 
Cahokia mounds. 28; implements, pot- 
tery and pictographs, 30 

Prehistoric relics from Wabash county 
(illustration), 26, 29 

Prentiss, B. M.. 324 

Presbyterians (early), 122, 176 

Press (See Journalism) 

Price, George B., 445 

Prill, Max, 1558 

Proctor, David Choate, 176 

Protestant churches (early), 121 

Pruett Family, the, 1474 

Public schools First American, 365; 
basis of Illinois system, 366; primi- 

tive school houses, 369; conventions 
to encourage public education, 370; 
best friends of the cause, 372; state 
law of 1855, 373; present system of 
public education, 373 

Pulaski county Caledonia, the old 
county seat, 519; Mound City of the 
earlier times, 520; General M. M. Raw- 
lings, 520; plans for the great em- 
porium city, 521; Union Block, Civil 
war hospital, 522"; the present Mound 
City, 523; villages of the county, 523 

Pulley, Lewis B., 999 

Quick, Thomas, 378 

Quincy, 174 

Quindry, S. Eugene, 1588 

Raab, Henry, 341 

Raddle, Frank J., 1621 

Railroad strike of 1877, 340 

Railroads, 203, 236, 237, 503 

Rainey, Henry T., 338 

Raith, Julius, 328 

Raleigh, 538 

Randolph county County and state his- 
tory parallel, 524; Kaskaskia court 
house of 1819, 525; a slave county, 
529; population, 1825-1840, 525; coun- 
ty seat moved to Chester, 526; decline 
of Kaskaskia, 527 ; on the ramparts of 
Old Fort Gage, 527 

Rapp, Frederick G., 1137 

Rapp, Isaac, 405, 636 

Rapp, John M., 1644 

Rathbone, Valentine, 849 

Rathbone, Walter R., 849 

Raum, Green B.. 329 

Raum, John, 517 

Rawlings, M. M., 205. 520 

Rawstron, R. N., 1650 

Ray's settlement, 494 

Rea, Herman M., 1259 

Reardon, James S., 327 

Rebman, Emma, 1709 

Rector, John T., 362 

Rector. Nelson, 115, 476 

Reed, Frank S., 690 

Reed, John, 75 

Reed, Joseph B.. 688 

Rees, Samuel H., 736 

Reichert, August, 1628 

Reichcrt, John F., 1570 

Reinhardt. 0. F., 1565 

Renault, Phillip, 207 

Renault land grant. 511 

Rendleman. Andrew J., 598 

Rendleman. Drake H.. 1575 

Renfro, John H. B., 706 

Renfro. Robert E., 705 

"Republican Advocate." 346 

Repudiation of state debt, 221, 223 

Residences (illustrations), John Mar- 
shall's residence. Shawneetown, 125; 
John A. Logan's home at Benton, 466; 
childhood home of William J. Bryan, 
Salem, 504; residence of the late Wil- 
liam R. Morrison, Waterloo. 513; man- 



sion of Pierre Menard, near old Fort 
Gage, 525; home of Daniel Stookey, 
near Belleville, still standing, 535 

Reuter, Theodore L., 1231 

Revolutionay flag owned by Robinson 
brothers, Shawneetown (illustration), 

Reynolds, H. G., 400, 401 

Reynolds, John, 167, 255, 533 

Reynolds, Marcus Green, 483 

Reynolds, Thomas, 527 

Reynolds (John) administration How 
Governor Reynolds was elected, 180; 
the inaugural message, 181 ; deep snow 
of 1830-1, 182; the Black Hawk war, 
183; call to arms, 184; the end, 190; 
second half of administration, 192 

Rhodes, Orange H., 659 

Rich, George D., 580 

Rich, George W., 1129 

Rich, Robert L., 1109 

Richards, J. H., 343 

Richardson, A. M., 31 

Richardson, James A., 489 

Richardson, William A., 252 

Richart, Fred W., 1007 

Richland county Conditions in 1820, 
528; Elijah Nelson and Roswell Park, 
528; customs of early settlers, 529; 
the hard year, 1881, 530; first insti- 
tutions, 530; the Civil war, 531; Ol- 
ney, 531 

Rickert, Nelson, 949 

Rickman, Joshua H., 1210 

Rider, William H., 383 

Ridgeway, Thomas S., 340, 471 

Risley, Theodore, 549 

Ritter, Charles L., 1209 

River steamers on the marine ways, 
Mound City (illustration), 520 

Roads (early), 357 

Roberts Family, 926 

Roberts, George W., 1131 

Roberts, Harry" W., 930 

Roberts, Ira T., 1017 

Roberts, John F., 586 

Robinson, 447 

Robinson, J., 540 

Robinson, James C., 314 

Robinson, Luther F., 1222 

Robinson Township High School (illus- 
tration), 448 

Robison, Thomas L., 1151 

Rock Springs, 173, 382 

Rock Spring Seminary, 382; (illustra- 
tion), 383 

Rodenberg, William A., 1508 

Roedel, Carl, 1243 

Rogers. Peter, 511 

Rogers Seminary, 511 

Ronalds, K. C.. 608 

Rose, Albert M., J535 

Rose, James A.. 517 

Rose. Pleasant W., 776 

Rosiclare, 478 

Ross, Charles H. S., 948 

Rothrock. Walter S.. 1583 

Rude, Hankerson, 538 
Ruf, John, Jr., 1093 
Russell, John, 376 
Russell, William, 111 
Russellville, 497 
Rutherford, Friend S., 330 
Rutherford, Larkin, 509 

Sabin, Frank A., 777 

Saguinn (Blackbird), 25 

Sailor Springs, 441, 442 

Ste. Anne, 71 

St. Clair, Arthur, 100, 101, 532 

St. Clair county, 100, 102 

St. Clair county's first court house (now 
in Jackson Park, Chicago), 533 

St. Clair county General St. Clair 
creates the county, 532; county seat 
transferred from Cahokia to Belleville, 
532; early settlements, 532; German 
immigrations, 533; John Reynolds and 
John M. Peck, 533 ; Cahokia and Prairie 
du Pont, 534; the present county and 
county seat, 535; Charles Dickens and 
son, 536; East St. Louis, 537 

St. Francisville, 497 

St. Joseph's academy, 511 

St. Marie, 487 

St. Phillipe, 55, 71 

Salem, 503, 504 

Saline county Pioneer events, 538; 
county seat located at Raleigh, 538; 
political history, 538; Civil war sen- 
timent, 539; Harrisburg, 540; Eldo- 
rado, 540; Carrier Mills, 540; the old 
stone fort, 540 

Saline river, 354 

Salt, 18, 433, 472, 482, 484 

Salzmann, Ferdinand, 1389 

Sanders, Carl D., 1348 

Sandstone, 17 

Sangamon country, 157, 159 

"Sangamon Spectator," 348 

Sarahville (Golconda), 516 

Sargent, Winthrop, 100, 101 

Sauer, Albert N., 714 

Sauer, George N., 1443 

Sauer, Nicholas, 1439 

Sauer, Philip E., 1442 

Saussier. Jean B., 68 

Schaefer, Charles, 963 

Schaefer, Herman L., 1671 

Scharfenberger, Frank, 1018 

Schatz, William, 870 

Schauerte, Kasper, 1283 

Schmidgall, John L.. 643 

Schmidt, Henry E., 1116 

Schmitt. Edward G., 1110 

Schorr, John S., 1004 

Schroeder, Edward A., 1581 

Schroeder, Henry W., 1088 

Schuh. Paul G., 1703 

Schulmeister. Ernst F., 1009 

Schurmann. Edward. 1657 

Schuwerk. William M.. 1162 

Schwartz, William, 1458 

Schwartz, William A., 1034 



Schwarzlose, Gideon, 1641 

Scott, Charles L., 1665 

Scott, J. H., 594 

Scott, Thomas W., 557 

Scudamore, Joseph B., 1618 

Seaman, Jonathan, 1146 

Seeber, William P., 788 

Second Cavalry Regiment, 333 

Seed, Maurice J., 1370 

Seeley, John, 366 

Seely, Samuel J., 120 

Sellers, George Eschol, 472 

Sessions, A. Ney, 1048 

Seten, Ross, 1351 

Seventh Cavalry Regiment, 333 

Seventy-first Infantry Regiment, 329 

Shadle. Jacob, 440 

Shaw, Charles W., 1658 

Shaw, John, 151 

Shaw, John W., 622 

Shaw, Raleigh M., 1676 

Shawneetown, 125, 173 

Sheets, John M., 1288 

Sheley, Laurence B., 1063 

Shelton, William, 385 

Shields, James, 527 

Shoupe, Walter C., 1091 

Shriner, Harvey W., 1255 

Shryock, Henry W., 1214 

Shull, John, 175 

Shurtleff College, 383 

Sims, Horace R., 885 

Simpson, John C., 970 

Simpson, S. S., 435 

Sixth Cavalry Regiment, 333 

Sixtieth Infantry Regiment, 329 

Sixty-second Infantry Regiment, 329 

Sixty-third Infantry Regiment, 329 

Sizemore, M. Wilson, 1025 

Skaggs, Charles P., 888 

Skaggs, Pryor L., 889 

Slack, William P., 753 

Slade, Charles, 192, 444 

Slade, James P., 435 

Slater, W. Frank, 1005 

Slavery in the Illinois country, 105 

Slavery in the state, 150, 207, 247, 346, 

434, 494, 525 
Slocum, Rigdon B., 181 
Sloo, Thomas, 164 
Small, William M., 498 
Smith, Decatur A., 891 
Smith, Dudley C., 332 
Smith, Egbert A., 1560 
Smith, Frank S., 698 
Smith, George W., 243, 312, 1714 
Smith. Henry M., 1167 
Smith, James, 121 
Smith, James B., 1707 
Smith. Joseph, 224 
Smith. Randolph, 1269 
Smith, Rozander, 547, 551 
Smith, Sarah A., 1167 
Smith, Theophilus W., 197, 202, 346 
Smith, Thomas B. F., 1296 
Fmith, Ulysses E., 722 
Smith, Virginius W., 1305 

Smith, Walter S. D., 994 

Snider, Andrew L., 1404 

Snoddy, Lewis O., 1599 

Snodsmith, John, 1529 

Snyder, Adam W., 222 

Snyder, John, 68 

Social life (early), 123 

Soils, 10 

Sondag, William, 981 

Sons, Walter, 1633 

Southern Collegiate Institute, 386 

Southern Illinois College, 388 (illustra- 

Southern Illinois College First building 
erected, 387; the "Herald of Truth," 
388; college revived, 389; closed in 
1870, 391 

Southern Illinois high schools, 394 

Southern Illinois Hospital for the In- 
sane, Anna (illustration), 543 

Southern Illinois Milling & Elevator 
Company, 1696 

Southern Illinois Normal University, 
391, 395, 400, 401, 403, 405, 406 and 
407 (illustrations) 

Spanish-American War, 334 

Spann, William A., 1554 

Specie circular, 197 

"Spectator," 344 

Spencer, Thomas J., 402 

Spiller, Adelbert L., 592 

Spiller, William F., 803 

Spivey, Allen T., 1215 

Sprague, Daniel G., 176 

Sprigg, Ralph E., 1465 

Springfield selected as state capital, 204 

Sprinkle, Michael, 469 

Sproul, Alexander B., 857 

Stahlheber, Charles, 1449 

Staley, George A., 1639 

Staley, Ulla S., 1635 

"Star of the West," 344, 346 

Starved Rock (illustration), 46 

State Bank of Illinois, 166, 182, 194, 
198, 200, 223 

State capitals Kaskaskia, 137; Vanda- 
lia, 139 ; Springfield, 204 

State Normal University, 396 

"State Policy," 236, 503 

State Teachers' Association, 395 

State Teachers' Institute, 396 

Stead, W. H., 242 

Steeker, Rudolph, 1053 

Stelle, Thompson B.. 475 

Stephenson, Benjamin, 124, 128 

Stephenson, James W., 205 

Stephenson, Thomas B., 954 

Steward, Lewis, 340 

Stewart, James C., 782 

Stewart, Warren, 334 

Steyer, Theodore, 516 

Stilwell, C. D., 1279 

Stirling, Thomas, 75 

Stockade and blockhouses (about 1812), 
(illustration), 112 

Stock certificate of Cairo City and Canal 
Company (illustration), 239 



Stone, 16 

Stonecipher, John S., 1544 

Stonefort, 540 

Stookey, Vincent A., 840 

Stotlar, Harry, 1495 

Stout, Amos N., 1395 

Stout, John B., 1476 

Stratton, Charles T., 341 

Stringer, Daniel W., 1553 

Stringer, William M., 1051 

Strong, Judson E., 828 

Sullins, Thomas B., 1375 

Sunnyside coal mine, Herrin (illustra- 
tion), 562 

Supreme court building, Mt. Vernon (il- 
lustration), 490 

Suspension bridge across the Kaskaskia, 
Carlyle (illustration), 444 

Sutherland, Prior W., 498, 1710 

Swanner, Francis A., 642 

Sweitzer, John, 1145 

Swift, Eben, 334 

Swift, Hardy M., 1178 

Sycamore near Mt. Carmel (illustration), 

Taffee, John G., 850 
Talley, Henry, 1151 
Talley, Richard, 1149 
Tamaroa, 515 
Tanner, James M., 1647 
Tanner, John R., 341, 343 
Taylor, Harry, 1380 
Taylor, Joseph H., 1385 
Taylor, Robert M., 1381 
Taylor, Samuel L., 1572 
Taylor, S. Staats, 431 
Taylor, Zachary, 115 
Tecumseh, 25 

Tenth Infantry Regiment, 326 
Templeton, James S., 874 
Templeton, Robert B., 1467 
Terpinitz, Joseph E., 264 
Terry, Henry, 684 
Teutopolis, 459 
Thacker, Francis B., 1408 
Thebes, 431 

Third Cavalry Regiment, 333 
Thirteenth Cavalry Regiment, 334 
Thirtieth Infantry Regiment, 327 
Thirty-first Infantry Regiment, 327 
Thirty-eighth Infantry Regiment, 328 
Thistlewood, Napoleon B., 1551 
Thomas, Benjamin F., 1668 
Thomas, Jesse B., 109, 367, 527 
Thomas, William W., 792 
Thomason, John W., 1230 
Thompson, Sam A., 1336 
Thomson, William, 725 
Thrash. William H., 1545 
Throgmorton, Emmet F., 764 
Tibbets. Albert S., 757 
Tillson (Mrs.), John, 177 
Timber, 12 
Timber areas, 21 

"Tippecanoe and Tyler Too" campaign, 

Titus, William S., 1429 

Tobacco field, Clay county (illustration), 

Todd, John, 95, 100 

Tohill, Noah M., 1406 

Toler, Silas C., 329 

Tolliver, Alsie N., 1276 

Tomb of Gen. Alexander Posey, Shaw- 
neetown (illustration), 471 

Tonti, 42 

Tougas, Frank, 497 

Tougas brothers, 547 

Tourney's fort, 443 

Towle, Herman T., 840 

Towle, Joseph W., 839 

Trainor, William E., 1426 

Transportation Early river boats, 353; 
Southern Illinois waterways, 354; pio- 
neer trails and roads, 357; government 
highways, 358; work of the state, 363 

Trautmann, William E., 984 

Treat, Cyrus P., 804 

Trousdale, Fletcher A., 639 

True, James M., 329 

"Truth Teller," 445 

Tufts, Charles D., 1359 

Turkey Hill, 176 

Turner, James W., 1238 

Turner, J. B., 372 

Tuthill, Lewis B., 724 

Tuttle, Isaac R., 865 

Twelfth Infantry Regiment, 327 

Twenty-second Infantry Regiment, 327 

Twenty-ninth Infantry Regiment, ' 327 

Ullrich, William, 931 

"Underground" railroad station, St. 
Clair county (illustration), 536 

Union Block, 521, (illustration), 522 

Union county First settlers, 541; Jones- 
boro made the county seat, 542; the 
Willard family, 542; Colonel John S. 
Hacker, 543; vegetables and fruits, 
544; minerals and mineral springs, 
544; towns, 545 

United States Bank, 197 

University of Vincennes, 367 

I'pton, David, 475 

Valter, Peter J., 1356 

Van Arsdall, Elmer, 1270 

Van Cleve, M. T., 540 

Vandalia, 139, 173, 463 

Van Kirk. Samuel A., 671 

Varnum, Benjamin B., 958 

Varnum, James M., 100 

Venerable, James E., 1122 

Vernor, George, 1346 

Vick, John W., 1015 

Victor, William A., 1690 

Vienna, 494 

View of the Mississippi from Chester 

water tower, 526 
Villa Ridge, 523 

Vincennes Route to. 90; capture of, 93 
Vise, Harvey C., 1311 
Vise, Hosea'A., 593 



Vogel, Henry, 1410 
Vogelpohl, Henry F., 1268 
Voris, Hardy C., 1196 
Voyles, Lloyd F., 1585 

Wabash county Four Tougas brothers, 
first settlers, 547; the three block 
forts, 547; timber and saw mills, 549; 
milk sickness, 549; shif tings of the 
county seat, 549; aboriginal remains, 
561; notes from nature, 561; tlie Wa- 
bash and Mount Carmel, 561; live 
stock raising, 561 

Walker, Allen E., 1585 

Walker, Cecil, 1430 

Walker, D. Esco, 718 

Walker, H. R., 833 

Walker, Jesse, 178 

Walker, Lindorf, 1102 

Walker, Pinckney J., 833 

Wall, James B., 1382 

Wall mill, 530 

Wall, William A., 754 

Wall. William T., 864 

Wallace, Coke B., 946 

Wallace, Thomas L., 940 

Wallace, William S., 971 

Waller, Elbert, 1227 

Walnut Hill, 503 

Walser, C. R., 763 

\Valser, Gaither C., 1619 

Walters, Peter C., 1582 

Ward, Adam, 1611 

Ward, Francis M., 1082 

Ward, George F. M., 1524 

Ward, Guy C., 327 

Ward, Harry B., 1394 

Ward, Henry B., 1524 

Ward, Julius H., 989 

Ward, Robert R., 1001 

Ward, Todd P., 1524 

War of 1812, 111 

Warren, Hooper, 344, 348 

Warren, Willie E., 1611 

Washburn, Benjamin L., 1076 

Washburn, Cicero L., 1494 

Washburn, John, 385 

Washburne, Elihu B., 250 

Washington county County seat con- 
tentions, 552; Nashville finally se- 
lected, 553; court houses, 553; city of 
Nashville, 553; minor towns, 554 

Wastier, Peter, 604 

Waterloo, 511 

Watson, Andrew, 1455 

Wayne county First settlers and events, 
555; first county seat, 555; in the 
wars, 556; Capt. Thomas W. Scott, 
557; Fairfield, 557; farm values, 557 

Wayne county corn fields (illustration), 

Weaver, James R., 1461 

Weaver, Louis H., 1666 

Webb, Byford H., 770 

Webb. Isaac H., 1402 

Webb, Henry L., 428 

Webber, Andrew J., 1307 

Weber, Mathias, 1686 

Weber, T. C., 1688 

Wehrenberg, Charles, 741 

Weinel, August F., 1071 

Welborn, George B., 1522 

Wentworth, John, 251 

West, Emanuel J., 346 

Westbrook, Samuel (portrait), 539 

"Western Emporium," 347 

"Western Monthly Magazine," 347 

"Western Observer," 348 

Western Stage Company, 362 

Wheatley, Reuben J., 921 

Wheeler Brothers, 1548 

Wheeler, Charles B. 1549 

Wheeler, Charles W., 589 

Wheeler, Fred L., 1550 

Wheeler, Walter A., 1584 

Whitcomb, Augustus L., 386 

Whiteaker, Hall, 747 

Whiteaker, Mark, 1328 

Whiteaker, William J., 901 

White, Horace, '256, 258, 265 

White, Isaac, 559 

White, James A., 1008 

White, W. Thomas, 915 

White county Original physical fea- 
tures, 558; the county and its spon- 
sor, 558; early visitors, 559; Carmi, 
the county seat, 559; Enfield, 560; 
early-day wild pigeon roost, 560 

Whitehead, Noel, 787 

Whiteside, Samuel, 115, 185, 186 

Whiteside, William, 115 

Whiteside station (fort), 509 

Whitley, Marion S., 1280 

Whittenberg, Alonzo L., 1680 

Whittenberg, Daniel W., 1681 

Whittenberg, John S., 1680 

Whittenbergs, 1679 

Wiebusch, Alfred C. C., 960 

Wiegmann, Louis, 1456 

Wilcox. J. H. G., 507 

"Wild Cat" banks, 245, 415 

Wiley, William W., 771 

Wilkins, John, 75 

Will, Albert J., 587 

Will, Conrad, 172, 482 

Willard, Elijah, 205, 543 

Willard, Jonathan, 542 

Willard, Samuel, 167 

Willard, Simon, 812 

William County Fair, Marion (illus- 
trated), 563 

Williams, Billy, 429 

Williams, John C.. 1556 

Williams, Walter W., 935 

Williams, William Green, 483 

Williams, William H., 1016 

Williams, William M., 680 

Williamson, Albert W., 649 

Williamson, Thomas B., 1294 

Williamson county Last of Indians, 
561; the Jordan brothers, 561; indus- 
tries, 562; Mexican and Civil war 
matters, 562; towns in the county, 



Williard, Willis, 543 

Willis, Jonathan C., 791 

Willis, William A., 1218 

Wilson, Albert L., 937 

Wilson, Alexander, 470 

Wilson, Harrison, 471 

Wilson, Henry, 1126 

Wilson, J. C., 1648 

Wilson, Lyman W., 1597 

Wilson, S. J. Harry, 819 

Wilson, William, 157 

Wilson, William A., 1166 

Wilson, William P., 1181 

Wilson, William S., 912 

Wing, Robert H., 806 

Winnebago war (scare), 170, 183 

Winter of the deep snow (1830-1), 182 

Winthrop, Dempsey, 991 

Wisehart, William, 1695 

Woelrle, Francis R., 686 

Wood, George H., 606 

Wood, James N., 608 

Wood, John, 146, 174, 256 

Wooden pipe used at Equality Salt 

Works (illustration), 472 
Woodside. Edward E., 709 
Woodworth, Abner P., 1281 
World's Columbian Exposition (see 

World's Fair) 
World's Fair, Chicago, 341 
Wren, John, 538 
Wright, Joel, 205 
Wylie, Walter L., 1202 

Yates, Richard, 251, 314, 343 
Youngblood, Dewitt C., 1338 
Young, George W., 1700 
Young, John G., 1345 

Zenia, 439, 441 
Ziebold, George C., 1368 
Ziebold, George W., 1366 




It it a well known principle in educational processes that things are 
really known only as they are seen in their relation. Objects and sub- 
jects of study are wholly unexplainable when dissociated from one 
another. The physician who is called to the bedside of the fever patient 
no longer begins his treatment by making up large doses of medicine to 
reduce the fever, but proceeds to an examination of the blood of the 
patient for the presence of typhoid or other fever germs. If these are 
found his treatment is governed accordingly. This examination pur- 
poses to discover the cause of the illness; and the cause of the illness 
will in a very large degree determine the method of treatment. 

Science, in general terms, is the knowledge of things in their rela- 
tion. No study in the school curriculum has been more thoroughly 
rationalized within recent years than have the geographical studies. 
Formerly we merely asked the child to give, in his answer to a question, 
the bare fact, never the explanation. The child learned that the Amazon 
is the largest river in the world. He was not asked to see the relation of 
the Amazon river to its drainage basin, nor to the equatorial calm belt, 
the trade winds, nor its relation to the Andes mountains. Hence the 
child acquired no causal or related knowledge. The pupil learned that 
rice is a product of Louisiana, not the reason that the state is adapted 
to that grain. He may have learned that Illinois is a great agricultural 
state, but he gets no hint of the relation of that fact to the geological 
structure, or the climatic condition of this great state. It may be the 
child was taught to recite glibly that the New England states are manu- 
facturing and commercial in their interests, but not that both facts 
are the result of geological formations. 

In recent years we have been trying to give the children in our 
schools a body of facts that have causal relationship. In this way we 
appeal to their power to discriminate, to judge, and to reason. We 
thus lead the child to the acquisition of the power to solve many prob- 
lems for himself, and above all we lay the foundation for a form of 


scientific investigation which will lead the child in after years into a 
real scientific inquiry relative to the forces which from all directions so 
greatly modify his physical, mental, moral and spiritual life. 


"It is axiom in general application in geological science that there 
is an intimate relation existing between the physical geography and the 
geological history of every portion of the earth's surface; and in all 
cases the topographical features of a country are moulded by, and there- 
fore must be, to some extent at least, a reflection of its geological struc- 
ture. . . . More over, all the varied conditions of the soil and its 
productive capacities, which may be observed in different portions of our 
state, are traceable to causes existing in the geological history of that 
particular region, and to the surface agencies which have served to 
modify the whole, and prepare the earth for the reception and suste- 
nance of the existing races of beings. Hence we see the geological his- 
tory of a country determines its agricultural capacities, and also the 
amount of population which it may sustain, and the general avocation of 
its inhabitants." 

The people of Arabia could not well be other than horsemen, herds- 
men, and dwellers in tents. It was altogether fitting that the shepherds 
of Judea should have been watching their flocks by night. What else 
could the early people of New England do so well as to fish for their 
living? It is no mystery that Southern Illinois should count among her 
population tens of thousands of native and foreign-born miners. How 
appropriate that central Illinois should raise corn, and hay and oats. 
It is as easy to explain why the people of western Dakota, Nebraska, 
Kansas, Oklahoma, and Texas should lead the life of the plainsman as 
to explain why the Scotch are a frugal, healthful, God-fearing people. 

Reverting once more to the principle that things are known only 
in their relation, we may readily understand that the life of any people 
as a whole may be interpreted in a very large degree in terms of the 
geological structure of the region where that people lives. It is true 
that the casual observer may see that the people of central Illinois are 
agriculturalists because the lands are adapted to that occupation. Or 
that the people of the Rocky mountains are largely miners because 
there are many precious minerals in that region. But this understand- 
ing of these things is superficial and not in any sense scientific and 
hence not satisfying. He fails to see the vital relation between the 
particular calling a people may have and the peculiar geological for- 
mation of the region which lies at the base of that calling. The funda- 
mental, scientific explanation of a people's occupation is wrapped up 
in the geology of that people's land. 

Nor does the geological history explain only the kind of occupa- 
tion a people may follow; but the social, intellectual, and spiritual 
life derives its character indirectly from the rocks, the hills, and the 
streams, or perchance from the presence of the great ocean. It is 
generally agreed that the explanation of the wonderful genius of the 
old Greek civilization was partly accounted for by the great number 
of physical units in mountains and valleys. The Greeks never attained 
to a great national life ; the geological facts were against such attain- 
ment. But what the Greeks lost in government and national political 


life, they were more than compensated for in their enriched intellect- 
ual and spiritual life. Nowhere has beauty had such exponents as in 
Greece. Nowhere has the spirit of moderation been so wonderfully 
manifest. The wonderful language of the Greeks, their unparalleled 
sense of the beautiful, their charming spirit of moderation may they 
not all be accounted for in the great variety of landscape, the well 
proportioned hills, the flowing valleys, the alternation of land and 
water? Be it so. 


Geology is a science which has for its purpose the revelation of 
the processes by which the outer portion, or crust of earth, was 
brought to its present state or condition. It does not attempt to ac- 
count for the origin of matter, but assumes that the earth once 
"existed in a state of fusion," or in other words, that the earth was a 
globe of liquid fire. The radiation of heat from the surface resulted 
in the gradual cooling of the mass, and thus the first rocks were 
formed, just as rocks are now formed from molten masses that are 
poured forth from some of our great volcanoes. 

It is the theory then that the outer surface of the earth was once 
a great mass of rock formed from the cooling of the outer portions 
of the liquid sphere. This outer crust became hard while the inner 
part of the earth was still in a molten condition. This hard crust of 
the earth formed from the cooled outer portions of the liquid mass 
is called igneous rock. As the cooling process continued, the layer of 
rock became thicker by the additions of inner portions, and the liquid 
mass has constantly decreased in size. As time went on the enclosing 
crust "crumpled" in its effort to conform to the liquid mass beneath. 
In the course of time water gathered in the depressions and the pro- 
jecting portions became our continents. Eventually the elevated 
portions began to disintegrate under the influence of rain and other 
agencies, and the detritus was transported by running water and de- 
posited in the lower levels. In the course of great stretches of time 
these deposits, which necessarily were in layer form, grew in num- 
bers until they now aggregate thousands of feet in thickness. These 
layers of rock formed under standing water are known as sediment- 
ary, or stratified rocks. We thus have two general classes of rock, 
igneous or fire rock, and sedimentary or layer rock. 

Great convulsions of the earth have completely changed the orig- 
inal relation of these two kinds of rock. The igneous elevations have 
been worn down and in many instances have sunken under the sea, 
and the sedimentary areas have been upheaved and have produced 
our present continental forms. In such cases the sedimentary rocks 
are no longer lying horizontal as they were when first formed, but 
are found in all kinds of positions. In some instances the layers may 
be seen standing on edge. Again the upheaving force may have been 
less violent, and the layers may have been pushed up in long folds; 
a cross section of which would present a series of arches. A third form 
of upheaval resulted in pushing large areas straight up, the elevated 
area breaking loose from the surrounding areas thus presenting the 
fractured edges to view many hundreds of feet above the surrounding 


It must not be thought that there was much regularity in the orig- 
inal formation of the sedimentary layers. For these layers are not 
uniform in thickness, nor in extent. Often a layer will appear in one 
place while in large areas of adjacent territory that layer will not 
appear. This is accounted for by supposing that there were slight 
upheavals which pushed the given territory up while the surrounding 
areas were receiving other layer material. If a certain deposit was 
begun upon a foundation which was slightly inclined and the deposit 
continued for long periods, that layer would be thick on one side of 
the area and thin upon the other, even thinning to an edge. 

These layers have all been studied and named, their life history 
written, and their relationships established. The individual layers 
have been brought into "groups" and named from the condition of 
life represented in the various layers. The time occupied in deposit- 
ing the layers in any named group, is sometimes spoken of as an era, 
while the sub-divisions of an era are known as periods. A brief de- 
scription of the eras will enable the reader to follow the descriptive 
matter with greater ease. 



The Archeozoic Era includes the oldest stratified rocks, and these 
under ordinary circumstances would be found just above the oldest 
igneous formation. The word Archeozoic means beginning that is 
the beginning of life. However, few life remains have been found in 
the layers of this era. So uncertain are the geologists about the iden- 
tity of life forms in this era that the word Azoic, which means with- 
out life, has been applied. The rocks of the Archeozoic Era are so in- 
terwoven with the igneous rocks that there is great confusion in the 
layers, and much uncertainty in identification obtains. 

The Proterozoic Era rests directly on top of the archeozoic layers. 
The stratifications are much more easily determined in this era. Little 
if any signs of animal or plant life are to be found in these rocks and 
the term Azoic is also applied here. 

The Paleozoic Era is the third in order, and lies directly above the 
Proterozoic. The word means ancient life that is first life. The old- 
est forms of life appear in the rocks of this era. Since they are the 
oldest forms they would be by the evolutionary theory the lowest 
forms when structure is considered. Something like five hundred spe- 
cies of the fauna have been classified belonging mostly to the inverte- 
brates. Some plant life is also recognized. 

The Mesozoic Era is fourth in order and lies just above the Paleozoic 
Era. The rocks of this group are so named because of the advanced 
stage of life represented, the word Mesozoic meaning middle life that 
is life between the invertebrates and the higher forms of vertebrate life. 
The life found includes reptiles, amphibians, and mollusks, as well as the 
lowest forms of mammals, fishes, and birds. 

And lastly we have the Cenozoic Era. The word means modern life 
or new life. This is the age of mammals. There now appears the fullest 
development of animal life including man. The poisonous gases have 
disappeared largely consumed by the abundant growth of vegetation. 
The earth, and water, and air have become the fit habitation of the 
highest forms of fishes, birds, and mammals. This is the age in which 
we now live. 


"We thus see that we could simplify the classification by applying 
the four terms Azoic, Paleozoic, Mesozoic, and Cenozoic No life, old 
life, middle life, and new life. Each era has been carefully analyzed 
and subdivided into what are called periods. 

The following scheme will give the ideal which the geologist has con- 


Eras Periods 

f Present 
I Pleistocene 

Cenozoic. . J Pliocene 

I Miocene 
I Oligocene 
(_ Eocene 

f Upper Cretaceous 

Mesozoic J Lower Cretaceous 

1 Jurassic 
t Triassic 

C Permian 

Coal Measures 
I Sub-Carboniferous 
Paleozoic { Devonian 


I Cambrian 

f Keweenawan 

Proterozoic j Upper Huronian 

(. Middle Huronian 

( Laurentian 
Archeozoic j Lower Huronian 


The word "Periods" in the foregoing scheme is used to denote a 
certain amount of time consumed in the deposit of the various layers 
grouped under the several "periods." The word system is often used 
to name the group of rock layers formed in any period. The several 
systems are often sub-divided into an upper, middle, and lower, or into 
other divisions. 

There are probably no rock formations in Southern Illinois older than 
those found in the Lower Silurian layers. "Just below Thebes, in 
Alexander county there is an exposure of about seventy feet of the 
upper part of this group, consisting for the most part of white and light 
bluish gray limestone, in layers two or three feet in thickness. It can 
be cut into any desired form and is susceptible of a high polish." This 


same stone outcrops in Missouri near Cape Girardeau where it has been 
long extensively used, and where it is known as Cape Girardeau Marble. 
This is known as the Trenton limestone and is the lead-producing rocks 
of Galena. A representative of the Cincinnati group of the lower Silu- 
rian is found at Thebes in Alexander county both sandstone and lime- 
stone. The former has been extensively used in foundation work in the 
city of Cairo. 

The Upper Silurian group is known as the Niagara limestone and is 
represented in Union and Alexander counties. It is a cherty material 
and is recommended as an excellent product for macadamizing the public 

The Devonian system of rocks is represented in Southern Illinois. 
There is what is called the Clear Creek limestone found in Jackson, Union, 
and Alexander counties. It is a chert or impure flint, rather compact in 
texture, buff, light gray, or nearly white in color. The decomposed ma- 
terial forms a white clay resembling chalk. This deposit is known across 
in Missouri as the "Chalk bank." Some of this Clear Creek limestone 
has the qualities required for mill-stones and some good burr-stones have 
been made from this limestone. At the "Devil's Back Bone" at Grand 
Tower, at Bald Rock on Big Muddy and on Huggins creek in Union 
county, the stone has a beautiful grayish white color and takes a very 
high polish. This limestone is identified with the Oriskany sandstone of 
New York by the fossils found in each. The Devonian system is further 
represented by the ' ' Calico rock ' ' of Union county. This is almost iden- 
tical with the St. Peter's sandstone. The "Bake Oven" near Grand 
Tower represents the Onondaga group of New York. Black shale also 
belongs to the Devonian system. It is quarried in Union county under 
the name of Black slate. 

The Lower Carboniferous system is also known as the Mississippian 
system. During this period of time the Mississippi basin was covered by 
the sea and certain sedimentary formations were in progress. The Kin- 
derhook group consisting of shales and limestones find outcroppings in 
Union, Hardin and Monroe. The Keokuk group of the lower carbonif- 
erous system is found in Monroe county. The Chester limestone lies like 
a great flat wedge to the southward 800 feet in thickness, but at Alton 
only 20 feet thick. It outcrops in Randolph about Chester and 
in Pope county on the Ohio river. 

The Upper Carboniferous system (coal measures) lies just above the 
lower carboniferous strata. It contains the great coal deposits which is so 
marked a geological formation of Southern Illinois. There are five produc- 
tive coal fields within the limits of the United States. The Southern Illi- 
nois field of some 37,000 square miles is the largest field found in any one 
state. Twenty thousand square miles of coal fields in Indiana and Ken- 
tucky, belong to the Southern Illinois field. 

There is no doubt as to the origin of coal at least it is certain it is of 
vegetable origin. Just as to the process of formation, the geologists are 
not agreed. The opinion is general that the vegetable matter had its 
origin where the coal layers are now found. At the time when the coal 
measures were first being formed the entire south end of the state was 
submerged, and after long periods there was a gradual emergence and 
then a submergence. During this period the coal measures were de- 
posited. The economic phase of the coal measures will be considered in 
a later chapter. 


The Jurassic system is slightly represented in the area of Southern 
Illinois. Jurassic rocks have been found in the bluffs near Thebes in 
Alexander county. They are found up the Mississippi on the Illinois 
side as far as Grand Tower. These rocks are well represented on the 
Missouri side of the river. The older geologists thought that creta- 
ceous deposits could be identified along the Ohio, but later investiga- 
tions seein not to confirm the first impressions. 

None of the first four systems of the Cenozoic Era is represented 
in Southern Illinois excepting some representative rocks of the Eocene 
group. These have been found in Pope, Massac, and Pulaski. Some 
clays and lignite have been found in Alexander county. But the Ple- 
istocene and recent or Post-Glacial formations are found in great abun- 
dance in Southern Illinois. 

The Quarternary Period of the Cenozoic Era, as indicated above, 
' ' embraces all the superficial material, including sands, clays, gravel, and 
soil which overspreads the old formations in all parts of the state. 
This last formation is the most important of all for it is of primary 
importance, economically considered, because it gives origin to the 
soil from which all our important agricultural resources are derived. ' ' 
The system of formations which are known to the geologists as Post- 
Tertiary are included in four divisions : Sands and clays ; drift clay 
and gravel ; loess ; and alluvium. 

The sands and clays are the oldest layers and consist of beds of 
stratified yellow sand and blue clay of variable thickness. In the 
region of Perry, Washington, and adjacent counties there is what 
seems to be a blue mud, such as would accumulate in the bottom of a 
muddy pond. Beds of clay and sand have been found in other locali- 
ties in the sinking of shafts and in the digging of deep wells. It is 
thought that these formations extend quite generally over the state, 

Above these stratified sands and clays we find several varieties of 
drift clays with coarse gravel and boulders of varying sizes which 
have been transported evidently from the region of the great lakes. 
These layers vary in thickness from twenty to one hundred feet, or 
more, and all are overlaid with beds of stratified gravel. The true 
Drift, which term is applied to all these formations, is not generally 
markedly stratified and yet the deposits or formations appear in beds 
of various thicknesses. "At Vandalia, in the bluffs of the Okaw, there 
is a good exposure of these formations, showing both the stratified and 
unstratified deposits. The unstratified drift-clays constitute the lower 
portion of the bluff, extending to the height of thirty-five or forty 
feet above the bed of the river at low water, and resting thereon about 
the same thickness of sand and gravel presenting distinct lines of strat- 

The third kind of formation resting upon the Drift is the Loess, a 
fine mechanical sediment that seems to have accumulated in a quiet 
lake or other body of fresh water, or to have been deposited by the 
action of winds from the south or southwest. 

And finally we have the Alluvium, a rich deposit forming the bot- 
tom lands in rivers and smaller streams. 


The Cenozoic Era is so recent and its history is so vitally related 
to the life of the human race that it will be quite proper to give a 


more extended account of the geological story of this period. The 
formations are discussed under the Tertiary and Quaternary Periods. 
The latter period is popularly divided into the Glacial and the Post- 
Glacial formations. These glacial formations have been so recent and 
the territory covered by the great ice sheets so extensive, that great 
interest attaches to this period. 

In North America there seems to have been three great centers of 
glacial movement one known as the Labrador ice sheet; a second 
called the Kewatin ice sheet ; and the third the Cordilleran ice sheet. 
The first sheet had its center of movement near the central point of the 
peninsula of Labrador; the second had its center near the western 
shore of Hudson Bay ; and the third moved from the Canadian Rockies. 
The ice sheet whose center rested on the Labrador peninsula is the 
one we are locally interested in. The movement from this center to 
the south, northeast and northwest soon reached the waters of the 
Atlantic and the Hudson Bay; but the movement to the southwest 
covered nearly the entire state of Illinois. The Labradorean sheet 
reached its extreme southern limit in Southern Illinois, some 1,600 
miles from the point of departure. The advancing front in Illinois 
took on the form of a crescent and its extreme southern reach may 
be traced according to the most recent geologic surveys from Chester 
in Randolph county southeast through the southern side of Jackson, 
eastward through southern Williamson, east and northeast through 
southeastern Saline, northeastward to the Wabash through the north- 
west corner of Gallatin and southeastern White. This line marks the 
southern limit also of the prairie areas and is also coincident with the 
northern foot hills of the "Ozark Mountains" which trend east and 
west across the state through Union, Johnson, Pope, and Hardin. 

Illinois was subject to at least four ice-sheet invasions according 
to the more recent investigations. These in order of time were : First, 
the Illinois sheet, which seems to have covered nearly the entire state. 
The portions not covered are known as the driftless or unglaciated 
areas. There are three of these First, all the territory south of the 
southern end of the drift as traced above from Chester to the Wabash. 
This driftless or unglaciated region includes in part the counties of 
Jackson, Williamson, Saline, Gallatin, and White, and it includes 
in whole the counties of Union, Johnson, Pope, Hardin, Alexander, 
Pulaski and Massac. There is a second driftless area of a few coun- 
ties in the extreme northwest corner of the state in the vicinity of the 
old lead mines. The third driftless area is found in the end of the 
peninsula formed by the Illinois and the Mississippi rivers including 
the counties of Pike and Calhoun. 

The second invasion is known as the lowan sheet. It seems not 
definitely settled whether this sheet had its origin in the Labrador 
center or in the Hudson Bay vicinity. It seems to have moved south- 
eastward and left a "profusion of large granatoid boulders which lie 
chiefly on the surface and are somewhat aggregated into a boulder 
belt on the eastern border of the tract." One may see residences and 
other buildings, yard fences and ornamental structures constructed 
from these boulders in the towns near the boulder field. Such houses 
may be seen in the county of DeKalb and adjoining counties. The 
territory covered by this second invasion may be roughly enclosed by 
the Rock river on the west, Wisconsin on the north, Lake Michigan 


on the east, and on the south by the parallel of the southerly bend 
of Lake Michigan. 

The Third invasion is named the Earlier Wisconsin and covers 
the northeastern fourth of the state. 

The Fourth invasion is known as the Later Wisconsin and borders 
the west shore of Lake Michigan, reaching out some fifty or sixty 
miles from that body of water. Here in Southern Illinois we are more 
interested in the first ice sheet since it is the only one that directly 
affects us. 

No other single agent has been so potent in the modification of 
the surface of the earth as have glaciers and ice sheets. When we 
remember that these ice-sheets were hundreds and possibly thousands 
of feet thick, and were hundreds of miles in width and length, some 
adequate notion may be formed of their power to plow up and com- 
pletely change the surface structure of the earth. 

The debris which they brought with them from the Laurentian 
mountains of Canada was distributed over Illinois greatly to the en- 
richment of the soils of our entire state. This material which eventu- 
ally became our soil in all the glaciated areas, was transported in sev- 
eral ways. Much of it was pushed along mechanically in front of the 
advancing ice-sheet, so that when the forward movement began slow- 
ing up this material was left scattered along in lines agreeing in gen- 
eral with the front of the advancing ice-sheet. Much material was 
carried along under the ice-sheet and was very generally ground and 
distributed over the glaciated area. Other material was carried on 
the ice-sheet and often deeply imbedded in it. When the movement 
was checked this superimposed material becoming heated under the 
warm rays of the sun worked its way through the ice and rested on 
the ground, the whole body of ice eventually melting. 

Lastly. Vast quantities of material were carried by the streams 
which continually flowed from the melting ice. Much of this detritus 
was left on the broad flat prairies, but much was carried into the 
streams which overflowing their banks carried this material to right 
and left in the stream's valley where it was deposited as alluvium, 
previously mentioned. 

The material which these glaciers brought into our state is called 
Drift. Its composition varies, but is usually clay, sand, and boulders. 
This drift is often found stratified, but more generally it is without 
definite layer formation. Further attention will be given to this mat- 
ter under the head of soils. 

We come now to the last phase of the geology the Human or 
Present Period. We must now see the earth as the home of man. 
Through untold ages the Creator has been gradually unfolding his 
plan to us, of filling the earth with plants, and animals, and last and 
most important of all man. It must not be supposed that the forces 
which have been operating through all the geological ages have all 
run their courses and are no longer active and powerful. Many of 
these forces which were instrumental in producing the various stages 
in the geological history are still at work and will continue to work 
for untold ages. Among these we may mention the forces affecting 
the elevation and subsidence of the continental forms. The work done 
by running water has not ceased as we can easily see everywhere. 
The disintegrating power of alternations in heat and cold especially 
when accompanied by the presence of moisture is always going on. 

We will now turn our attention to the resources which a wise Cre- 
ator has placed within the reach of the human race. 



Southern Illinois has three general kinds of soil, or rather there are 
three recognized sources of the soils of Southern Illinois. First, there are 
the various kinds of soils which were formed out of the stratified rocks by 
mechanical and chemical processes. Second, soils formed by the drift 
which overlies all the areas known as glacial areas, and third, the soils 
formed by the loess which was widely distributed over Illinois following 
the recession of the ice sheets. 

The first is known as residual soil, because it is what is left after the 
decomposition of the sedimentary rocks in the unglaciated regions. The 
second is called the glacial soil because it is formed directly from the 
matter furnished by the glacial sheets. The third are called silt soils 
because the loess is of the nature of silt which settles from water or which 
might be sifted over a country by constant winds blowing from a dry and 
timberless region. 

It is easy to understand the formation of the residual soils. At the 
end of the Upper Carboniferous Period the whole state was covered with 
the rocks of that period. If now we think of these rocks as being exposed 
to the sun's heat, the winter's cold, the action of water, freezing and 
thawing, and the chemical changes, we can understand that in the course 
of time a coating of soil would be formed. If the running water did not 
carry this new formed soil away it would lie where it was formed. It 
will also be easy to understand that as the coating of soil grew thicker the 
process of decay was less rapid, since the soil acts as a sort of blanket to 
prevent the agents of decomposition from reaching the undecayed 
rocks. Now this is exactly the soil making process that has been going 
on for hundreds of years in those portions of the state not covered by 
the ice invasions. 

It will be readily seen that the character of the soil formed in this 
way will be determined by the nature of the rock deposits in different 
localities. In the three previously named areas, as driftless areas, namely, 
the extreme south end of the state, the regions about Galena, and the 
peninsula between the Illinois river and the Mississippi, the soil will be 
known as residual soil, except as it has been modified by the deposit of 
loess in larger or smaller quantities. 

In these driftless areas the "soils show variations which correspond 
in a rough way with variations in the structure of the rocks from which 



they are derived. In regions underlaid by shale or limestones a more com- 
pact and adhesive soil is found than in sandstone regions, while each 
class of limestone has its own peculiar soil. With proper rotation of 
crops these soils constitute a fertile portion of the state, otherwise they 
become exhausted sooner than soils formed from glacial drift. ' ' 

. The character of the soils formed by the glacial drift varies also ac- 
cording to the nature of the transported material. Three general classes 
have been recognized. First, Stony or Glacial Clay soil. This soil is made 
from the weathered surface of the drift-sheet unaffected by water in its 
formation and not subsequently covered over with loess or silt. This 
class of soil is found in the ' ' corn belt ' ' north of the Shelbyville moraine. 
Second, we have the gravelly soils. This kind is found near streams, 
lakes, and in regions where lakes once existed. It is not of value except 
as a subsoil for loamy deposits. Third, sandy soils are found in the old 
beaches and along certain rivers. Mason county presents a very excellent 
illustration of this class of drift soils. 

The loess soils are very widely distributed and are of three classes 
according to the degree of their perviousness to water. They are those 
readily pervious ; slowly pervious, and nearly impervious. The first is 
a characteristic soil in Southern Illinois. As it recedes from the Missis- 
sippi, the Ohio, and the Wabash it becomes of the nature of a white clay. 
Its chief ingredient is silica, and this soil is adapted to the raising of 
grains and fruits. This white soil is one of the first things that attracts 
people's attention who have been accustomed to the black soil of Cham- 
paign, Dewitt, and other corn counties, and they say, ' ' Why your soil is 
so poor, if is as white as chalk. " It is not necessarily the poor quality 
of the soil but the peculiar mechanical structure which allows the water 
of the rainy season to escape together with an extended drouth period 
from June to September that prevents Egypt from presenting an attrac- 
tive appearance in midsummer. Good illustrations of the slowly pervious 
silt soils are found in the regions of the lower Illinois river. The third 
class, almost wholly impervious silts are found in the uplands of 
"Egypt." This is the soil which has made Egypt famous as an apple 
producing region. Clay, and Marion, and Wayne and other nearby coun- 
ties find a mine of wealth in their orchards. A failure in the apple crop 
in these counties is not to be attributed to the soil but to the various 
forms of insect life which is baffling the orchardists of this region. 

The loess soils of Southern Illinois are among our richest areas. Not 
because of the great amount of loess but probably because of the mix- 
ture of loess with either the residual soils or with the silt soils. The soil 
of the unglaciated region of Union, Johnson, Pope, Saline and Hardin 
is of a remarkable type. Bald Knob, near Alto Pass, a young mountain 
of some eight hundred or a thousand acres and something like 800 feet 
in height has a very rich soil. Even upon the very top, the soil is deep 
and of a rich brown color. Apples, peaches, sweet potatoes, tomatoes, 
grains and small fruits abound. This young mountain is a part of the 
Ozark range and was never glaciated. Mr. Rendleman who lives on the 
very summit of the Knob says the winds are continually bringing a rich 
silt up its long slopes and leaves it upon the top of the hill. And there 
are evidences that large quantities of loess have been deposited there. 
Throughout the Ozarks, especially on the south side of the range, the 
soil is very productive and all kinds of fruits and vegetables are pro- 
duced in abundance. 


Alluvial soils abound in Southern Illinois. Alluvium, as we know, 
has been deposited by water. It is not different from the Residual, Drift, 
and Loess soils but a mixture of all. As the soil was forming the run- 
ning water was gradually transporting it to lower levels. This process 
the average school boy is familiar with. This alluvial matter has been 
left in the river valleys, in inland lakes and in ponds and on flat and un- 
drained prairies. The Great American Bottom which reaches from 
Alton to Chester, a distance of nearly a hundred miles by the windings 
of the river, and from five to nine miles wide, is the most remarkable 
alluvial deposit, outside of delta formations, in the United States. 
There are large areas of alluvial deposits along the Ohio river in the 
counties of Gallatin, Massac, Pulaski, and Alexander. The Wabash 
valley on the Illinois side has considerable alluvial areas. The small 
streams all have alluvial bottoms. The lands between the Embarras and 
the Wabash is alluvial. Such streams as the Little Wabash, the Saline, 
the Cache, the Big Muddy, the Kaskaskia, all have alluvial bottoms. 
In many localities this alluvial bottom land is worthless as water stands 
on it "the year round." The laws of Illinois provide for the organiza- 
tion of drainage districts and much of the land will be redeemed. 

The soils of Southern Illinois have never been scientifically studied 
until within recent years. The State University has begun a regular soil 
survey and when this is complete there will be a revolution in methods 
of farming in "Egypt." The state has also established experimental 
farms in several counties of Southern Illinois where the farmers may 
see just how the soils in that region should be cultivated. 


Although Illinois is called the Prairie State, in its early history at 
least twenty-five per cent of its area was covered with forests. These 
forests lay mostly in Southern Illinois. "There was no county en- 
tirely without timber, but the real forests were confined to the south- 
ern portion of the state. Many counties throughout this section pre- 
sented an unbroken forest, chiefly deciduous trees, rich in variety, and 
of a quality unsurpassed on this continent. The growth on the mar- 
gins of the smaller streams, areas between forks of creeks, or wher- 
ever protected from forest fires, including the "oak openings" 
peculiar to the broad rolling prairies, consisted largely of burr, black 
and red oaks. 

The origin of the Prairies is accounted for on the theory that the 
forest fires kept down the young trees. In 1880 when a careful esti- 
mate was made of the timbered areas there was found only about 15 
per cent of the entire area covered with timber. This loss is almost 
entirely due to marketing the merchantable timber in the southern 
part of the state where the production of lumber and cooperage stock 
has been an important industry for many years. Owing to the ex- 
haustion of the best grades of mature hard woods, the business has 
been rapidly diminishing, and as the present supply is chiefly on lands 
not available for cultivation, the remaining area is not liable to fur- 
ther encroachments. 

The state is about four hundred miles from north to south. This 
corresponds with the distance from Norfolk, Va., to Boston, Mass. 
Within this distance of four hundred miles there grows as great a 



variety of trees as is found in twice the distance from north to south 
in Europe. 

An exhibit of the forest wealth of the state was made at the World's 
Columbian Exposition at Chicago, and the great variety of native 
growths was a wonder to our own citizens. There were twenty-four 
genera comprehending seventy-five species of indigenous woods rep- 
resented. Three kinds of Gum, fourteen kinds of Oak, four kinds of 
Hickory, two of Locust, four of Ash, five of Maple, and four of Elm 
were exhibited. In addition to these native woods there were shown 
nineteen genera of cultivated timber, including seventy-two species 


making in all one hundred and fifty species of woods in the state at 
that time. A farm wagon was shown made of twenty-five different 
kinds of cultivated woods all grown on one farm in Lee county. It 
was reported that more cultivated woods were growing in the state 
than were exhibited. It is further stated that while the total area 
of timber has decreased probably the leaf surface has held its own 
and the beneficial influence of vegetation on climate, water supply, 
etc., has suffered no loss. 

The oldest citizens tell of some of the methods of waste in the tim- 
ber supply. Often in alluvial bottoms where the timber had reached 


considerable size it was customary to clear up the underbrush and 
then with axes cut deep rings around the trunks of the large trees 
left standing. Often a belt of bark a couple of feet wide would be 
removed. This was done in the late fall or at latest in the winter. In 
the spring when the surrounding forests put forth a wealth of verdure 
the girdled trees stood leafless. This allowed the sun to reach the 
ground and thus crops of corn or tobacco were raised. In the fol- 
lowing winter the thrifty farmer cut down his dead trees, cut the 
trunks into saw logs and had them sawn into material for a barn or 
a house. The brush and rougher trunks were burned and the second 
year he had only the stumps to contend with. 

The shiftless farmer allowed his trees to stand for several years 
often building fires about the bases of the dead trees which were 
eventually consumed entire. Others would cut the trees down and 
cut the trunks into certain lengths. When this work was done a 
"Log-rolling" was announced. Scores of men would come to the log- 
rolling. Often the women would also come and assist the good house- 
wife in preparing the noon meal or engage in quilting, or tacking 
carpet rags. The men divided themselves into squads of ten to twelve. 
Each squad elected a captain and chose up. Hand spikes were pro- 
vided and when all was ready the logs were lifted and carried to the 
pile. These piles often contained eight to twelve logs, ten to sixteen 
feet long. They were set on fire on the very top of the pile, the fire 
burning downward. In this way the farmer got rid of his trees but 
he burned up hundreds of dollars worth of good lumber. It is no 
uncommon thing in this day to see in Southern Illinois large alluvial 
fields in which the trees have been girdled, the trunks still standing, 
having been partially consumed by fire. 

Saw mills were plentiful forty and fifty years ago, but now they 
are few. The best timber in Southern Illinois was used up to supply 
the first railroads with bridge and framing material. Tens of thou- 
sands of beautiful young trees were taken for piling. In recent years 
the walnut, oak, hard maple, and a few other growths have been cut 
for furniture. Hard wood finish in residences has been popular and 
the price of good oak flooring for such use is now from five to eight 
dollars per hundred feet. 

Nothing so well represents the rapid disappearance of our best 
Southern Illinois timber as does the establishing of "tie preserving 
plants" in several of our cities. Fifty years ago when railroads 
began to thread our state the builders would have nothing but the 
best white oak ties. Now there is no longer a supply of timber for 
this grade and the railroads are under the necessity of providing sub- 
stitutes. This is done by introducing a scientific process by which ties 
of the common woods are rendered longlived. 

Arbor Day, which the law recognizes, has, through the public 
schools, done much and will do more toward creating public sentiment 
favorable to the conservation of our forests. And it is building up 
an aesthetic taste in the planting and cultivating of flowers, shrubs, 
and cultivated trees. Since the advent of concrete and steel in con- 
struction there is no longer the great need of timber that there was 
in the early days. 



Nothing has brought Southern Illinois more material prosperity 
than has the coal deposits within her limits. Coal was known to exist 
about Belleville, and on the Big Muddy, probably as early as 1826, or 
possibly earlier. Governor John Reynolds built a railroad from the 
bluffs near Belleville across the American Bottom to the Mississippi 
in 1837. He says: "I had a large tract of land located on the Mis- 
sissippi Bluffs, six miles from St. Louis, which contained inexhaustible 
quantities of bituminous coal. This coal mine was the nearest to St. 
Louis of any on this side of the river." In 1835 the legislature of 
Illinois granted a charter to the "Mount Carbon Coal Company." 
"Hall Neilson and his associates, successors, and assigns" constituted 
the company. In 1836 Mr. Neilson, who lived in New York city, adver- 
tised the "Mount Carbon" property for sale. The property was fully 
described. The mines were located near Brownsville, the capital of 
Jackson county, thirty miles from the Mississippi river in a bluff adja- 
cent to the Big Muddy river. The seam of coal is described as six 
to seven feet thick, "mines easily, in large blocks, and does not crum- 
ble or form much slack or dust." Each hand could mine and deliver 
on the wharf one hundred bushels a day. Wages were $10 to $15 per 
month. It was figured that the coal could be put on the barge at two 
cents per bushel. "For several years past coal has sold in New Or- 
leans, during the winter season, at 37 y 2 cents to 62y 2 cents per bushel. 
The supply at New Orleans is derived from Pittsburg and Wheeling. 
Mount Carbon is only half as far away and the quality of the coal 
decidedly better." Mr. A. B. Waller of Washington, D. C., visited 
this mine in the interests of a prospective purchaser and reported that 
the coal had been mined back from the face of the bluff about fifty 
feet and that ' ' the quality of the coal is superior to any bituminous 
coal I have ever seen, except perhaps the Cumberland." 

Although the presence of coal in Southern Illinois was known from 
the early '30s, little was done or could be done toward developing 
this resource until railroads became an established fact. The only 
way of transportation prior to 1854, when the Illinois Central was 
completed, was by river. A few mines were opened in the vicinity 
of the rivers, but the only use for coal in the interior was for black- 
smithing, and even in this instance charcoal was very generally used. 
The first engines used on the railroads burned wood. The railroads 
have been the most direct factor in opening up the coal mining busi- 
ness in Southern Illinois. The Illinois Central reaches the coal fields 
in Jackson, Perry, Washington, and Marion. The Mobile and Ohio 
reaches the mines of Jackson, Randolph and St. Clair. The Chicago 
and Eastern Illinois serves the mines in Johnson, Williamson, Frank- 
lin, Jefferson, and Marion. The Big Four passes through the counties 
of Johnson, Saline, White, and Wabash. The Baltimore and Ohio 
Southwestern reaches the mines in Gallatin, White, Marion, Clinton, 
and St. Clair. In addition to these five more extensive railroad sys- 
tems, there are several short independent lines which act as feeders 
to these five larger roads. 

The whole state is divided into ten mining districts of which four 
are located in Southern Illinois. In the Seventh District are the coun- 
ties of Bond, Clinton, Madison, and Marion. The Eighth District 


contains the two counties of Randolph and St. Glair. The Ninth Dis- 
trict includes Franklin, Gallatin, Jefferson, Perry, Saline, and White. 
The Tenth District comprises the counties of Jackson and Williamson. 
The total output from these four districts in 1911 was 25,000,000 tons. 
The supply of coal is of course not inexhaustible as was formerly 
thought. The area of the coal field in Southern Illinois is in round 
numbers about 6,000 square miles or 3,800,000 acres. It is estimated 
that one square mile will produce 1,000,000 tons of coal for every foot 
in thickness of the seam. Dr. David Dale Owen estimated the entire 
thickness of the twelve coal seams of Southern Illinois at thirty-five 
feet. Each square mile then would produce 35,000,000 tons, estimat- 
ing that all the coal could be mined. But it is liberal to say we mine 
only about eight feet of this thirty-five. There are then only eight 
million tons available per square mile. Not over three-fourths of this 
estimate is removed, making only about six million tons per square 
mile. Our annual production runs about twenty-four million tons for 
Southern Illinois. This gives the result of an annual consumption of 
four square miles, and our coal will last 1,500 years. 


No other portion of the state is so rich in stone, oil, and gas. The 
geological formation has already been given, but it will be necessary to 
repeat some facts in dealing with these resources. 

The two general classes of rock which are economically valuable 
are the sandstones and the limestones. The chief use made of these 
stones is for building purposes. Limestone is burned into lime in many 
localities in Southern Illinois. And probably in some a fair grade of 
cement is manufactured, but there are no noted instances. Crushed lime- 
stone has been extensively used as ballast for railroad beds, and as the 
foundation for the macadamizing of the public highway. In many 
places along the railroads, stone crushers have been erected and quite 
an industry built up. In the larger towns and cities of Southern Illinois 
there has grown up the spirit of permanent improvement and many 
cities are paving the streets. This is usually done by establishing a grade 
setting curbing of sandstone or of concrete and then placing on the 
grade crushed limestone to the depth of four or five inches upon which 
is placed a coating of sand and paving brick, or finer crushed stone and 
some "bonding" material of a bituminous nature. Another economic 
use made of the limestone is that of constructing building blocks of 
crushed stone and cement. This same material is used as above indi- 
cated for curbing. Then there is a rather recent use of crushed lime- 
stone in the construction processes, namely : The use of concrete in 
railroad culverts, archways, retaining walls, and in the construction of 
walls of great buildings, the floors, stairways, and foundations. Fence 
posts, gate posts, and watering troughs are some recent innovations on 
the farm, of the concrete material. It has also been used as flooring 
in dairy barns, livery stables and for the bottom and sides of grain 

But perhaps the most far reaching and important use made of lime- 
stone is the use the farmers are making of it as a fertilizer. The soils 
of Southern Illinois are what the agricultural chemist calls sow. That 
is, there is a large quantity of humic acid in the soil which renders the 


soil unfit for the production of most agricultural products. This humic 
acid is found wherever there have previously been large accumulations 
of vegetable matter, resulting in what the chemist calls humus or vege- 
table mold. Under the leadership of the College of Agriculture of the 
State University, the farmers are now applying crushed limestone to 
their soils in quantities ranging from 800 to 1,000 Ibs. per acre. This 
crushed limestone is attacked by the humic acid in the soil and new 
chemical combinations formed which provide the needed foods for the 
growing crops. One may see carloads of crushed limestone upon the 
siding of the railroad tracks in the villages and towns of Southern 
Illinois. If one will watch for a day or so he will see the farmers com- 
ing with their wagons prepared to haul, and distribute this material 
over their farms. 

The state has done much to assist in the investigation of the value 
of this crushed lime when applied to the sour farm lands of this end of 
the state. An experiment station has been established at the Southern 
Illinois State Normal University and experiment farms are located at 
several points within our territory. To lessen the cost of procuring 
this crushed limestone the state furnishes it from the penitentiary at 
Chester almost free of charge, the farmer paying the freight. 

Lime is burned in many portions of Southern Illinois where lime- 
stone deposits are found. Large quantities of lime have, in previous 
years, been made in the vicinity of Alton. In fact, from Alton to 
Cairo, along the bluffs, there are outcroppings of limestone and in many 
localities lime has been burned. It is said the best quality of lime is 
produced near Prairie du Rocher. The limerocks about Chester and 
in Union county are used for the manufacture of lime. St. Clair county 
has an abundance of limestone and quantities of lime are burned and 
some cement made. Near Falling Spring, in the southwest part of St. 
Clair, a high grade white lime has been manufactured. It is said lime 
was burned near Alton as early as 1815, by collecting large logs into a 
heap, piling thereon the limerock. When the logs had been burned 
the limestone had been converted into lime. Shipments in barrels be- 
gan in 1847. 

Fine qualities of limestone for building purposes and for lime are 
found in Pope and Hardin. In Johnson county building stone, both 
limestone and sandstone for ordinary building purposes, is found in 
abundance. Sandstone of a very excellent quality is found in Jackson 
county on the Illinois Central Railroad, four miles south of Carbon- 
dale, at a small place known as Boskydell. Here quarries were opened 
as early as 1855. In the construction of the Southern Illinois Normal 
University, large quantities of this brown sandstone were used. About 
the same time or perhaps shortly previous, the present capitol at Spring- 
field was in process of building. The reputation of the Boskydell brown 
sandstone had become so general that the building commission author- 
ized the use of the Boskydell sandstone in the great columns on the 
north, east, and south of the great capitol, while the trimmings on the 
fronts are of the same stone. The capitals and cornices are from the 
white sandstone quarries of Grand Tower in Jackson county. In 1883, 
a Mr. Rawles, a stone merchant in Chicago, purchased these Boskydell 
quarries and installed about forty thousand dollars worth of modern 
machinery, including steam drills, saws, hoisting machines, dressing 
machines, a gravity railroad from the quarries to the Illinois Central 

Vol. It 


Railroad, and other modern machinery. Cut stone was sent into all 
the great cities and for a time was used extensively, but the presence 
of numerous deposits of iron and the lack of uniformity in color, worked 
against the general use of this stone and the quarry was abandoned 
and the machinery rotted and rusted away. 

The discovery of gas in Southern Illinois occurred at Sparta in 
1888. Some progressive citizens organized a company for the purpose 
of prospecting for natural gas. The first well put down, struck gas at 
a depth of 848 feet in a bed of light grey porous sand. The pressure 
was strong and steady. A new company was organized and began 
boring in earnest. In 1894 there were twelve wells producing gas and 
supplying four hundred domestic fires besides a number of manufac- 
turing establishments. The total production per year when the wells 
were at their best was eight million cubic feet. It is estimated that 
the equivalent of the fuel capacity of one ton of coal is twenty-three 
thousand cubic feet of gas. This would give a saving in coal per year 
of three thousand five hundred tons in the Sparta gas field. 

In addition to the wells sunk by the company mentioned above, 
there were many wells sunk by private parties. The gas was known 
as the "sweet" or "petroleum" gas which to many was a sure sign of 
the presence of oil in this region. Since 1894 the wells have weakened 
and in many there is little or no pressure, and no recent borings have 
been made. The total number of wells bored was twenty-two. The 
territory covered by the borings was less than two square miles. 


The earliest travelers and explorers discovered traces of salt in va- 
rious places in Southern Illinois. There can be little doubt that the 
Indians were accustomed to either evaporate or boil the salt water 
which was found in the form of springs. The most noted place in 
Southern Illinois where salt was manufactured in an early day was 
on the Saline river in Gallatin county near the present town of Equal- 
ity. On the Big Muddy in Jackson county near the old forgotten town 
and county seat of Brownsville. In several places in Madison, Monroe, 
and probably in Bond and in some of the Wabash river counties salt 
was made, not on any great scale but for local market. The making of 
salt at Equality was such an extensive industry that its description has 
been given in a separate chapter. 

In 1856 a town was laid out by the county surveyor a mile or so 
north of the present city of DuQuoin. It has never grown to any size. 
In 1857 an iron and coal mining company was organized and engaged in 
coal mining until 1867 when W. P. Halliday of Cairo purchased the 
stock of the company. In 1870 in boring into the lower strata to de- 
termine the value of the coal layers there, at the depth of 940 feet salt 
water was discovered. At this time the great salt works at Equality 
were not being well managed, and Mr. Halliday saw his opportunity. 
In 1873 he put in a complete plant costing several thousand dollars for 
the manufacture of salt. Additional wells were sunk and the work 
was extensively carried on. At the time of their greatest prosperity the 
works turned out 150 barrels per day. The product was shipped south 
mainly. By 1890 the production had begun to decline, though they 
continued to operate for ten years, but for the past few years the works 


have been abandoned and ere long the spot that knew a thriving industry 
will be marked by old foundations and rusting machinery. 

Lead is found in such apparently inexhaustible quantities in the 
territory west of the Mississippi river, that the few traces of lead found 
in Southern Illinois seem very insignificant. However, we ought never 
despise small beginnings. Lead was known to exist in the northwest 
corner of the state in a very early day. Mining began about 1827. 
These mines in their palmy days produced about one-fifth to one-fourth 
of the output of the world. In 1845 the mines were at their best and 
from that date to the present the production has greatly diminished. 

In 1839 lead was discovered in the digging of a well on the farm of 
Mr. James Anderson one mile below Rosiclare on the Ohio river in 
Hardin county. In 1842 Mr. William Pell discovered spar and lead 
about three-quarters of a mile back of the river at Rosiclare. Com- 
panies were organized and a number of "diggings" opened. As many 
as nine shafts were opened for the mining of lead. In going down, the 
shafts pass through beds of fluor spar to a distance of ninety feet. 
The lead mines were operated with small or no profit, and in 1851 the 
"diggings" were abandoned. In several other places in Hardin county 
lead has been discovered, but not in quantities which would justify an 
attempt to produce it for the market. Traces of lead have been found 
in other counties, but no diggings have been opened. 

The clays of Southern Illinois will yet prove of great value, but up 
to the present time no industries on a large scale have been established 
to develop the clay resources, except for the manufacture of brick. The 
various uses of the different kinds of clays found in Southern Illinois 
are the manufacture of common red brick, fire clay brick, paving 
brick, terra cotta, drain tile, sewer pipe, crocks, jugs, jars and finer 

Common red brick are manufactured in great quantities in all sec- 
tions of the state. In the early days the home-made bricks were used 
for outside as well as for inside work. In many towns in this territory 
the older brick buildings show the old fashioned hand made brick, but 
in the better class of business houses as well as in modern Brick resi- 
dences they use "pressed brick." These have been manufactured in 
large quantities in the penitentiary at Chester, the hand made products 
being used for inside walls and for "filling." 

Fire brick clay is often found closely associated with the seams of 
bituminous coal in this section. Throughout Randolph county there are 
two deposits of fire clay, one at a depth of 70 or 80 feet and another at 
the depth of 120 feet. The same layers of fire clay are also found in St. 
Clair county. In four oil borings in the Sparta oil field, fire clay was 
found at a depth of 125 feet. The layer was found to be from two to 
eight feet thick. Some fire clays are found in Johnson, Pulaski, and 
Pope counties. 

Paving brick are manufactured in Murphysboro and in Albion. 
The demands for paving brick are beyond the supply furnished by these 
two paving brick plants. At Albion a second company has been or- 
ganized, and is working its way into the favor of municipalities where 
paving improvements are going on. 

Drain tile clay is not of a very high grade in Southern Illinois and 
no large factories have attempted its manufacture into drain tile. Local 
factories have sprung up here and there, but usually of short life. No 
sewer pipe is manufactured in this territory. 


Potter's clay has been found and small factories have engaged in the 
making of jugs, crocks, and jars in Anna and in Metropolis, and in 
McLeansboro, and probably in other localities. But all these industries 
are gone and only dilapidated sheds and rusting machinery are left. 

It may not be generally known that Southern Illinois has rich beds 
sf a very high grade of clay suitable for the manufacture of porcelain 
wares. These fine clays are found in the region of the Ozark hills. In 
the World's Fair exhibit, in the Illinois building, were "some very 
pretty dishes of Vhite and decorated faience, made of clay and silica, 
from Union county the only articles of white table-ware ever made out 
of purely Illinois materials. The following is the chemical analysis 
furnished by the Rostrand Porcelain Works at Stockholm, Sweden. 
The first sample was taken from the clay pit, Mountain Glen, Union 
county. This clay is called Ball Clay : 

Silicic acid 57.71% 

Titanic acid trace 

Alumina 32.75 

Oxide of iron 1.93 

Lime 53 

Magnesia 19 

Potash 96 

Soda 24 

Water and organic matter 11.69 

Total 100.00 

Another analysis made by Harold Almstrom of earthly silica from 
the mine of the Chicago Floated Silica Company in Union county, is as 
follows : 

Silicic acid 97.82% 

Alumina and oxide of iron 1.08 

Lime 50 

Water and organic matter 42 

Alkalies and loss 18 

Total . 100.00 

Samples of clay from Pope county are very similar to the two above 
samples. Some very fine samples of queensware have been made from 
the Pope county clays. 

It has been stated that the deposits of fluor spar found in Hardin 
and Pope counties are the only ones found in the United States. But 
there are said to be traces in Kentucky. At Rosiclare, a little village 
on the Ohio river in Hardin county, just where this county joins Pope, 
there are apparently inexhaustible quantities of this mineral. It is 
found in connection with lead ores and with silver. It is sometimes 
free and presents the most beautiful tints of blue, yellow, red, and 
green. Two or more companies are now operating in this locality. The 
spar is used for various purposes, but chiefly as a reducing agent or 
flux in the reduction of ores. It is shipped from the mines by way of 
the Ohio river. 



Nothing in the New World was more interesting to the Europeans 
than the broad prairies. In 1817 Governor Edward Coles, then a young 
man, when returning from a diplomatic mission to Russia stopped 
in France and in England. He was a Virginian but he had traveled 
through the west, and had himself been greatly charmed by the broad, 
rich prairies. The French and the English never tired of his beautiful 
descriptions of the prairies. Among those who were charmed by his 
story of the western prairies was Morris Birkbeck who was a very 
prosperous tenant on a large estate in England. Mr. Birkbeck came 
to America and settled the City of Albion in Edwards county. In later 
years when England's prince of letters, Charles Dickens visited Amer- 
ica he was anxious to see a prairie. His wish was gratified as the 
reader will understand by reference to his Notes on America. 

The French who of course were the first Europeans to reach the 
Mississippi valley, were amazed at the great sweeps of timberless areas 
and they immediately applied the French term prairie, without change 
in the spelling, to designate these meadowlike regions. The word was 
first applied by Hennepin and later by other French writers. The 
term was first used to describe the "bottoms" or valleys adjacent to 
the rivers and bounded on opposite sides by the ' ' bluffs. " As a proof 
of this we need only to study the early French names, as : Prairie du 
Chein, Prairie la Forche, Prairie la Crosse, Prairie du Pont, and Prairie 
du Rocher. Nor is this application of the term scientifically inap- 
propriate for it is shown by Professor Leo Lesquereux that the for- 
mation of the prairies of central Illinois was identical in character 
with the formation of the bottom lands along the Mississippi and other 
similar streams. It is said the English had no name for that peculiar 
formation which we call prairies, because they had no such formation. 

"These are the gardens of the Desert, these 
The unshorn fields, boundless and beautiful, 
For which the speech of England has no name." 


It is said that it was a very difficult thing to convey to the mind of 
the unimaginative Englishman any adequate conception of the great 
prairies of America. 

When our forefathers came originally to the Illinois country, they 
found about one-fourth of it timbered and about three-fourths timber- 
less or prairies. The early settlers designated the largest treeless area 
the "Grand Prairie." Its location corresponds almost exactly with a 
great divide or watershed which separates the drainage of the Missis- 
sippi from the drainage into the Ohio. It reaches from the north- 
western side of Jackson county through Perry, part of Williamson, 
Washington, Jefferson, Marion, Fayette, Effingham, Coles, Champaign, 
and Iroquois, crosses the Kankakee river and extends to the southern 
end of Lake Michigan. Another extensive prairie region extends from 
Kankakee county west and northwest, crosses the Illinois river and oc- 
cupies a very large part of the territory between the Illinois and the 
Mississippi rivers. 

The origin of the prairies has been a debatable question for many 


decades. Three general theories have been advanced to account for 
their existence at the time of the coming of the earliest settlers into 
the limits of this state. One explanation, and that one is not an at- 
tempt to account for the soil formation, but merely to account for the 
absence of the trees, is that the great prairie fires Which annually swept 
over the "grand prairie" effectually kept the trees from making 
enough headway to withstand the destructive flames. And there can 
be no doubt that these annual fires were a sufficient explanation of 
the treeless condition of the prairies to the unscientific settlers. But 
there are two other explanations both approaching the subject from a 
scientific standpoint. 

Professor Whitney holds to the theory that the treeless prairies 
have had their origin in the character of the original deposit or soil 
formation. He does not deny, in fact admits, the submersion of all 
prairie lands formerly as lakes and swamps ; but he holds that while 
the lands were so submerged there was deposited a very fine soil which 
he attributes in part to the underlying rocks and in part to the accumu- 
lation in the bottom of immense lakes, of a sediment of almost im- 
palpable fineness. This soil in its physical and probably in its chem- 
ical composition prevents the trees from naturally getting a foot-hold 
in the prairies. 

Professor Lesquereux holds to the theory simply stated that all 
areas properly called prairies were formed by the redemption of what 
was once lake regions and later swamp territory. He points out that 
trees grow abundantly in moving water but that when water is dammed 
up it always kills trees. The theory held by Professor Lesquereux is 
that standing water kills trees by preventing the oxygen of the air 
from reaching the roots of the trees. He further shows that the nature 
of the soil, in redeemed lake regions, is such that without the help of 
man trees will not grow in it. But he further shows that by proper 
planting the entire prairie area may be covered with forest trees. 

As rich as was the soil of our prairies, the first immigrants seldom 
settled far out on these treeless tracts. Most of the early comers were 
from the timbered regions of the older states and felt they could not 
make a living very far from the woods. Coal had not come into use 
and wood was the universal fuel. There was a wealth of mast in the 
timber upon which hogs could live a large part of the year. Again our 
forefathers had been used to the springs of the hill country in Ken- 
tucky, Tennessee, and Virginia, and they did not think they could 
live where they could not have access to springs. An early comer 
back in the thirties rode over the prairies of central Illinois and then 
entered a hundred and sixty in the timber and here he cleared the land 
and opened his farm. 



There were several tribes of Indians occupying the Illinois country 
when the French first came into the territory. It is stated that there 
were few Indians west of the Mississippi river when the continent was 
discovered. Of course such statements must be taken with limitations. 
The Indians of Mexico and territory to the north numbered many thou- 
sands. Evidently there were few in the region afterwards made into 
the states of Kansas, Missouri, Iowa, and what we call our northwestern 
states. The Indians whose homes were east of the Mississippi, began in 
a very early day to move into the west, and in this way we of the later 
years are accustomed to think of these western Indians as having long 
occupied the land. The number estimated as living east of the Missis- 
sippi at the coming of the whites is stated at 250,000 ; and they were 
scattered rather uniformly over the country from Canada to the Gulf 
of Mexico. 

They maintained the tribal form of government that is, they had 
a chief, and prominent warriors, who, upon certain occasions, met in 
council and decided upon war, or peace, or upon other general questions. 
The Indian race was an indolent, thriftless people. They had an in- 
definite notion of a future life. In their natures "they were ruthless 
and revengeful, narrow minded and brutal, dissolute, selfish, gluttonous, 
polygamous and lustful." Surely this is a pretty strong indictment 
against them. They lived in temporary shelters called wigwams, and 
provided their sustenance by hunting and fishing chiefly. Among some 
tribes there was carried on an indifferent cultivation of the soil. The 
work in tilling the soil was done by the squaws and the old men, the 
young braves considering it beneath their dignity to work. 


Those who have given considerable study to the Indians have 
grouped them first into great ' ' families, ' ' the grouping being based upon 
their language. Then these families are subdivided into "confeder- 
acies" and these into "tribes." The Algonquin family occupied the 
territory north of the St. Lawrence river and the lower lakes, around 
the upper lakes and along the Mississippi, eastward along the Ohio river 
into the Chesapeake bay. The Iroquois family occupied what is now the 
state of New York and parts of adjacent states. They were completely 



surrounded by the Algonquins. The DaKota (or Sioux) family, was 
located in the territory north of the Wisconsin river and west of the 
Mississippi river. These are the chief families with which Illinois his- 
tory is concerned. 


The Indians found in Illinois by Marquette and Joliet, belonged to 
the Algonquin family. There was undying hatred between the Iroquois 
and the Algonquins. The Illinois Indians were therefore in constant 
dread of the attacks of the Iroquois. 

The Illinois Indians formed a sort of loose confederacy of six or 
more tribes, known as the "Illinois" confederacy. The following tribes 
constituted the "Illinois" confederacy: The Metchigamis; the Kaskas- 
kias ; the Peorias ; the Cahokias ; the Tammarois. In addition, there 
were the Piankashaws, the Weas, the Kickapoos, and Shawnees and 
probably other tribes or remnants, who sojourned on Illinois soil for 
longer or shorter periods. The first five of the above named tribes were 
probably all who ought to be counted in the "Illinois confederacy." 

The Metchigamis were found along the Mississippi river, having 
originally come from west of the Father of Waters. They sojourned in 
the vicinity of Fort Chartres and were the objects of earnest missionary 
effort on the part of the Jesuits. They also lived in the vicinity of Lake 
Michigan, to which they gave their name. They were allies of Pontiac 
in his war of 1764, and perished with other members of the Illinois 
confederacy, on Starved Rock in 1769. 

The Kaskaskias originally were found along the upper courses of 
the Illinois river, and it was among the members of this tribe that Mar- 
quette planted the first mission in Illinois. They moved from the upper 
Illinois to the mouth of the Kaskaskia river in the year 1700, and 
founded there the ancient city of Kaskaskia, which eventually became 
the center of French life in the interior of the continent. From the 
year 1700, when the tribe numbered about six or eight thousand souls, 
to 1800, the Kaskaskias occupied the territory around the village of 
Kaskaskia. It is said the Tamaroas and the Kaskaskias were united into 
one tribe in the first part of the nineteenth century under Chief John 
Baptiste DuQuoin, who was a personal friend of General Washington. 
Their numbers were greatly reduced, and there was constant friction 
between these two remnant tribes and a branch of the Shawnees who 
lived east of the Big Muddy in Saline and Gallatin counties. A final 
bloody battle was fought by a pre-arrangement on the land now owned 
by L. D. Throop, three miles southwest of Frankfort, in Franklin 
county, in 1802. The battlefield was well marked for many years and 
white men have lived continuously in the immediate vicinity since 1802, 
and the account of the battle needed only to pass from the pioneers of 
1800 to the present living generation. The Kaskaskias were forced west- 
ward to the Big Muddy when the slaughter continued until the Kaskas- 
kias were all killed or captured. This is sometimes called the battle of 
Battle Creek. The spot is at the crossing of the Big Muddy river by 
the road from the town of Frankfort, in Franklin county, to DuQuoin, 
in Perry county. In after years the Kaskaskias remained on a reserva- 
tion on the lower Big Muddy, whence they removed to the Indian 


The Cahokia and the Tamaroa tribes remained in the region of what 
is now St. Clair, Clinton, and Payette counties, up to the close of the 
eighteenth century, when they were merged with the Kaskaskias under 
Chief John DuQuoin. 

The Peorias made their home in the region of Lake Peoria and were 
a quiet and peaceable people. They never in any way affected the life 
of the people in the south end of the state. 

The Piankeshaws were a small tribe of the Miami confederacy. They 
first resided in southeastern Wisconsin. When La Salle and Tonti 
founded their empire at Starved Rock, the Piankeshaws were a part of 
the Indian population. When this enterprise failed the Piankeshaws 
moved to the region of the Wabash river. They were in the region of 
Vincennes when Gen. Clark captured that post from the British in 1779. 
It is said that the Piankeshaws were among the best friends the early 
settlers had among the red men. They were eventually moved to a 
Kansas reservation and thence to the Indian Territory. Mr. Walter 
Colyer, of Albion, has gathered up a large amount of material concern- 
ing this tribe which sojourned for a few decades in Southern Illinois. 

The Kickapoos came into Southern Illinois in the early part of the 
nineteenth century. It is said the first time they ever acknowledged the 
authority of the United States was in a treaty made at Edwardsville, 
Illinois, in 1819. The Kickapoos seemed to scatter in their settlements, 
some residing in the Sangamon country, some on the Embarras, and some 
on the Kaskaskia. They eventually moved to Kansas and from there 
they drifted to the southwest. 

In this connection it is proper to say a word or two about some noted 
individual Indians who had to do with the early history of Southern 


When George Rogers Clark came to Kaskaskia in 1778, the Ottawa 
chief, Saguinn, or Blackbird, was temporarily sojourning in St. Louis. 
Clark desired to have a conference with him since Blackbird had a wide 
reputation throughout the west as one of the most powerful and saga- 
cious Indians of the Mississippi region. Blackbird was not at St. Louis 
at the time Clark sent for him, but had returned to his tribe on the 
upper Illinois river. The chief hearing of Clark's desire to confer with 
him, came voluntarily to Kaskaskia, where he held a long conference 
with General Clark. He obtained from General Clark the real issues in 
the conflict, and when ready to depart told General Clark that he sym- 
pathized with the Americans and would so tell his people. It is said of 
him that he remained a faithful friend of the Americans. 

Tecumseh, a chief of the Shawnees, was the most noted Indian in all 
the west, unless it may be that Pontiac was more widely known. Tecum- 
seh had in mind the forming of a confederacy of all the Indians in the 
west for the purpose of resisting the encroachment of the whites. He 
had a twin brother called the Prophet, whose home in 1811 was at a 
village on the Tippecanoe creek, where it empties into the Wabash. In 
the summer of 1811, Tecumseh left the cares of state in the hands of his 
brother, the Prophet, and journeyed into the south for the purpose of 
securing the support of the Indians in that section. On this journey 
Tecumseh came from the Prophet's town diagonally across Southern 



Illinois to the Mississippi at Fort Massac or Cairo. In passing through 
Williamson county he was seen by settlers among whom was John 
Phelps. The chief had with him twelve warriors, and passed along the 
Shawneetown-Kaskaskia trail to a point about where the city of Marion 
now is, and then he turned south along the trail which passed over the 
Ozarks through Buffalo Gap and thence south to Fort Massac or Cairo. 
Mr. Phelps talked with Tecumseh and while he was badly scared, he 
reported the great Indian as a very approachable and well disposed 

A third Indian of prominence was the Tamaroa chief, Jean Baptiste 
DuCoign, formerly alluded to. He was a very old and respected Indian 
at the time of the bloody engagement of his tribes with the Shawnees in 
1802. He had during the lifetime of Washington, visited the president, 

By courtesy of Hon. Theodore Rlaley. 


who had presented him with a medal for some service the chief had ren- 
dered, and this the chief wore with great pride. He was a halfbreed 
and Reynolds says had two sons, Louis and Jefferson, both of whom 
were drunken, worthless fellows. Chief DuCuoin had been converted to 
the Catholic faith and at his death was buried at Kaskaskia by the church 
at that place. 

Probably the most noted Indian who ever came into the territory of 
Southern Illinois was Pontiac, the famous chief of the Ottawas, and the 
moving spirit in the great "Confederacy of Pontiac." After many 
months of fruitless effort in trying to prevent the British from taking 



possession of the territory ceded by the French to the English at the 
close of the French and Indian war, a final treaty was agreed to at 
Oswego, New York, and Pontiac, broken in spirit and fortune, repaired 
to St. Louis, where he may have thought he could head another rebellion 
against British occupation of the territory west of the Alleghanies. In 
this conspiracy he hoped to have the support of St. Ange de Belle Rive, 
late commander of the French post at Kaskaskia. After lingering sev- 
eral days in St. Louis he crossed over the river, against the advice of 
friends to the old French village of Cahokia. Here a drunken revel was 
in progress and here the noted chief was murdered. Reynolds says he 
was stabbed to death by a Peoria Indian in the pay of the British. Moses 

By courtesy of Hon. Theodore Risley. 


says he was tomahawked by a Kaskaskia Indian hired by one William- 
son, an English trader. His body lay in the streets of Cahokia until the 
arrival of St. Ange de Belle Rive, who took the body to St. Louis, where 
it was given decent interment. 


There are so many evidences of a prehistoric life in the Mississippi 
region that it is now agreed by all archeologists that there was a life 
of considerable advancement in civilization in the Mississippi valley, 
and adjacent territory, long before the coming of the Indians, who 
were here at the coming of the Europeans. It is the purpose here to 
call attention briefly to some of the existing evidences of that prehis- 



toric life, and thus awaken if possible an interest in this most charming 
subject. Southern Illinois is rich in prehistoric materials. Many of 
these materials have been collected and are in the keeping of individ- 
uals or of institutions, or perchance of the state or national govern- 

One of the most obvious of the evidences of an early people is the 
great mounds, usually called "Indian mounds" by the general public. 
They are found in nearly all, if not all, of the counties of Illinois bor- 
dering the Mississippi, the Wabash, and the Ohio. The most noted 
perhaps of all these mounds are the Cahokia mounds situated some 
five miles northeast of the city of East St. Louis. One of these, the 
largest, is known as Monk's Mound, and in the vicinity are scores of 
others of lesser size, but thought to have belonged to a great system 
of such structures in the ages past 


The great mound referred to above, is called Monk's Mound from 
the fact that in an early day in the nineteenth century, a colony of 


Trappist monks founded a settlement on this mound which flourished 
for some time but later went to decay and the project was abandoned. 
This mound covers some sixteen acres of ground and is situated in Sec. 
34, T. 3, N. R, 9, west of the 3d P. M. It is 102 feet high and is some- 
what triangular in general form. It has at intervals been visited by 
scientific men since the year 1800. No very thorough examination 
has really ever been made of this mound. Some years ago the owner 
of the land tunneled in some fifty feet but found nothing but some bits 
of lead. But in digging a well on one edge of the mound many bones 
and other evidences of a departed people were found. The mound is 
now owned by a Mrs. Ramey, who places a very high estimate upon 
the ground occupied by this mound. A Mr. D. I. Bushnell of St. Louis 
is said to have offered $10.000 for eighteen acres including the mound, 
but Mrs. Ramey 's estimate of its worth was $100,000 quite a valuable 
piece of ground. 

In 1907 Mr. Clark Me Adams, son of the Hon. William Me Adams, 



archeologist of Alton, Illinois, read a paper before the State Historical 
Society in which he gave an extract from a letter from the Rev. Fr. 
Obrecht, abbot of the Trappist Monastery at Gethsemane, Kentucky, 
which throws much light upon the story of the Trappist monks who 
occupied the Monk's Mound in the early years of the past century. 
The story as given by Rev. Obrecht, briefly told, is as follows : Two 
Trappist Fathers, Urbain and Joseph seeking a favorable place for a 
settlement were offered 400 acres of ground by M. Jarrott on the Ca- 
hokia river. At first the offer was rejected, but after a time the offer 
was renewed and accepted. There were about thirty-five people in the 
colony. They built twenty or more small buildings on one of the 

By courtesy of Hon. Theodore Risley 


smaller mounds. One of these buildings was the church, the whole hav- 
ing an attractive appearance from a distance. Father Urbain doubted 
the title to the 400 acres of land given them by M. Jarrott, so he went 
to Washington and secured from Congress a confirmation of the grant. 
In digging for the foundations to their buildings, they found many 
evidences of a former people. It does not appear that any buildings 
of importance were erected on the largest mound, but evidently some 
structures were erected there and its sides and top were cultivated. In 
1811 to 1813 a pernicious fever lingered in the colony, carrying off 
more than half of the Trappist colony as well as many members of the 
settlements in the upper end of the "American Bottom." In the early 
spring of 1813 the colony fled from the plagued spot. 


A traveler who visited the Monk's Mound colonists in 1811 or 12 
says the bluffs to the east of the mounds appear to be one vast cem- 
etery. Professor William McAdams in 1882 made an excavation at the 
foot of Monk's Mound at the northeast corner and unearthed a hun- 
dred pieces of pottery. A student of archeology has estimated that the 
community that built these mounds was not less than 150,000 or 
200,000 strong. 

Other mounds are found in the vicinity of Monk's Mound. A very 
beautiful mound called Emerald mound is found two and a half miles 
northeast of Lebanon in Madison county. It covers about two acres 
of ground and is some forty or fifty feet high. Mounds are found in 
Alexander county along the Ohio river. A few are to be seen in the 
eastern part of the state along the Wabash. 


A second evidence of a prehistoric race is to be found in a large 
class of stone tools or implements. These are in the forms of axes, 
hammers, and edged tools. Then there are those implements that were 
evidently for warfare. This class of articles are made from the flints 
and the hardest stones. Ceremonial stones of various forms have been 
found plentifully in Southern Illinois. Mortars and pestles are numer- 
ous. Pipes of all designs exhibiting great ingenuity in construction 
have been dug from mounds and burial places. 

A third evidence of a prehistoric people is to be found in quite a 
variety of copper objects found in mounds, and buried here and there 
where excavations have been made. The objects have been found in 
the form of axes, knives, spears, arrow points, and objects used for 
personal adornment beads, earrings, and bracelets. Copper kettles, 
needles and trays have been found. 

The fourth argument in favor of the idea that there was a race here 
prior to the coming of the Indians may be stated, based upon the amount 
and character of the objects wrought in clay. It is known that potter's 
clay of a very high grade is found in many localities in Southern Illi- 
nois. It is a theory that the region known as the American Bottoms was 
the center of all this prehistoric life, and that" people from the copper 
region around Lake Superior, and those from the localities on the Dela- 
ware, where great clay deposits are found, and those from the barren, 
rocky region of Labrador and from the home of the cliff dwellers in the 
southwest all congregated, as some think, about the erreat Monk's Mound 
for a sort of national feast or other form of gathering, political, social, 
commercial or religious. In this way the various articles which are found 
about these great mounds may have been brought into this territory. In 
England and in parts of Germany and Denmark, there are known to exist 
the original sites upon which were held trading fairs to which people from 
all over the civilized world came with their wares and their coins. 

Nothing reveals the fact that these prehistoric peoples had attained 
a high stage of civilized life more certainly than does the character of the 
pottery which has been found in many localities. Near the old salines in 
Gallatin county there can yet be picked up broken pieces of pottery which 
are fragments of very large clay vessels. These large clay vessels were 
evidently used in the manufacture of salt the theory being that these 
large clay vessels were filled with the briny water which, under the in- 



fluence of the sun and the wind, evaporated leaving the incrustations of 
salt behind. These fragments are from vessels which were from two and 
a half to three feet in diameter. This would give us vessels that would 
hold from twenty to forty gallons. 

These specimens of pottery all show peculiar systems of marking on 
the exravex side while the inner surface is always smooth. The simplest 



form of marking is the simple checks making meshes from half inch to 
one inch square. These peculiar markings are accounted for by the the- 
ory that the vessel was made inside of a wicker frame work and when 
the vessel was burned the markings of the wicker work were left. Gallatin 


county seems to be rich in this class of prehistoric material. A. M. Rich- 
ardson of Shawneetown has a very fine collection of pottery, most of 
which is in a good state of preservation. Mr. McAdams speaks of seeing 
two whole pans of pottery used in salt making in the salines near St. Gene- 
vive, Missouri, that were serving the purpose, when dug up, of a coffin 
for a child. These pans were of the form of an ordinary bread pan, 


some three feet across and six or eight inches deep. The dead child had 
been placed in one pan and the other pan inverted above it and the two 
thus arranged, buried. 

A fifth evidence of a prehistoric race is found in what archeologists 
call pictographs. These were found in various places in this state. The 
buffalo shown in the accompanying cut, the writer had the pleasure of 
examining on a bluff in the Ozarks at? the crossing of the Paducah branch 
of the Illinois Central railroad. The Piasa bird from its perch upon 
the rocks near Piasa creek looked out upon the Father of Waters for 
ages unnumbered before the first white man made its discovery. The 
tradition of the painting has faded from the memory of the oldest in- 
habitant. Other carvings upon rocks in various sections of the state 
can be accounted for only by the supposition that an older race than the 
Indian once occupied this territory. 



Four European nations established well merited claims to territory 
in the northern continent of the New World. These were in order, 
Spain, England, France and Holland. These nations of western Europe 
all followed up their original discoveries and eventually formed perma- 
nent settlements and established their civilization in the territory thus 


The English based their claim to territory in the New World upon 
the supposed discovery of two Italian seamen, John and Sebastian Ca- 



bot, who were at the time in the employ of Henry VII. These discover- 
ers are supposed to have traced the Atlantic coast from New Foundland 
to the Carolinas. It was upon these discoveries by the Cabots that Eng- 
land based her claim to that part of North America which lay inland 

VoL I J 



from the coast thus traced. Thus Illinois is in the territory claimed by. 
England, and in the Charter of 1607, granted by James 1 of England, 
Illinois was included in the territory belonging to the London Company. 
In later years the English kings granted strips across the entire conti- 
nent, known as "sea to sea" grants. It thus came about that Illinois fell 
in the grant to Virginia in 1609, and a portion of the state as it is today 
fell in the grant to Connecticut, and a portion to Massachusetts. 

The Spaniards settled the Floridas, Texas, Mexico, and Central and 
South America. They discovered the lower part of the Mississippi river 
under the leadership of Ferdinand DeSoto in 1541. The Spanish held 
all west of the Mississippi as a trust for France from 1762 to 1800, when 
it was ceded back to France, who sold it to us in 1803. During this pe- 
riod Illinois was held by England and the United States. 

The Dutch occupied the Hudson river valley as early as 1613 and 
eventually became a prosperous and contented people. They were con- 
quered by the English in 1664 and from that date forward we hear 
nothing of the Dutch in America except as individuals or families here 
and there. 

But the French settled in the valley of the St. Lawrence and in the 
region of the Great Lakes, and their relation to the early history of Illi- 
nois is very important indeed. In the year 1534 Cartier came into the 
St. Lawrence, and in 1541 attempted a settlement where afterward the 
city of Quebec was located. But the rigor of a Canadian winter was too 
severe for the French and the attempt was abandoned in the spring of 
1541. We hear nothing more of the French in the valley of the St. Law- 
rence until the coming of Champlain in 1608. In that year or the next 
the foundations of the future city of Quebec were laid. 

Champlain allied himself with the Algonquin Indians, and out of 
this alliance came an undying hatred of the Iroquois Indians toward the 
French. These Canadian Indians were accustomed to make warlike in- 
vasions into the country occupied by the Iroquois Indians. Champlain 
accompanied the Algonquins on one of these warlike expeditions in the 
summer of 1609. Lake Champlain was discovered by the great French- 
man, and the adjoining territory explored. When the allies were ready 
to return to Quebec they were attacked by the Iroquois and a severe bat- 
tle was fought. This was the first time the Iroquois had ever seen or 
heard a fire arm and great fear possessed their souls. This incident ap- 
parently not a very important matter, was far-reaching in its conse- 
quences. It determined that the New York Indians should be implaca- 
ble foes of the French. It further determined that the movements 
of the French into the territory of the west should be by the Ottawa 
river and the northern side of the great lakes, and not down the Ohio 
river the most natural route from lower Canada to the Mississippi 

Champlain was far-seeing and patriotic. He saw that the influence 
which the Jesuit and Recollet priests would have upon the Indians would 
greatly assist France in the conquest of the wilds of the New World. In 
1615 Champlain returned to France and succeeded in enlisting in his 
cause a number of priests of the Recollet order. The French authorities 
in the new world afterwards called to their assistance the more vigorous 
Jesuits and now the real onward movement toward the interior began. 
Mission posts were established along the lakes as far west as Green Bay. 
Missionaries were coming and going and the geography of the interior 


was becoming better known every year. Champlain was at the head of 
a company that had been chartered by Louis XIII, and no small amount 
of commercial enterprise was carried forward under his direction. He 
gave direction to the fur trade and to the planting of missions. After 
more than a quarter of a century of most unexampled activity in the 
cause of his country, his king, and his religion, Champlain laid down his 
burdens, and bade adieu to the scenes of his life-work. He died in 1635. 

Following the death of Champlain, the hostile attitude of the New 
York Indians was renewed. "Seldom did a single year pass without 
some hostile incursion or depredation upon the settlements from Que- 
bec to Montreal." From the death of Champlain to 1649 there was a 
period of marked inactivity in everything except possibly the work of 
individual priests. In 1649 and for five years, death and destruction 
reigned supreme. A treaty was effected between the French and the 
Canadian Indians on one side and the Iroquois on the other, and New 
France took on new life. 

On June 14, 1671, a congress of representatives of all the tribes 
around the great lakes was called at Sault Ste. Marie. Seventeen tribes 
sent representatives. Sieur St. Lusson was sent by the governor of New 
France to present the cause of the king. Fifteen Frenchmen, including 
priests, traders, and government representatives, were present. After 
much feasting and other exchange of courtesies, St. Lusson made "the 
formal announcement that he did then and there take possession of 
Lakes Huron and Superior, and all the countries contiguous and adja- 
cent thereto and southward to the sea, which had been or might hereafter 
be discovered, in the name of the king of France." 

From this date forward a new spirit of interest was infused into the 
government side of the westward movement. Reports were frequently 
coming from priests, traders, and others of the existence of a great river 
to the westward, and that in the region of this great river there were 
great stretches of prairies, over which roamed the buffalo and hundreds 
of smaller animals. These interesting stories had also been told by 
Indians whose home was in the vicinity of the great river. 


Among those who seemed to hear definite information relative to this 
unexplored region along the Mississippi Marquette was foremost. He 
had conversed with the Indians from the upper territory of the great 
river. He had in his heart to visit this territory, and had even mastered 
the tongue of the Illini. His purposes coming to M. Talon, intendant of 
New France, that official, who was now ready to return to France after 
many years of faithful service in the province, selected one Joliet to ac- 
company Marquette on the proposed expedition of discovery and ex- 

Marquette was born at Laon, France, in 1637. He had inherited 
from his parents great religious fervor. He was a Jesuit, and was sent 
to America in 1666. He had traveled throughout the whole extent of 
the territory from the Lake Superior region to Quebec. He had en- 
deared himself to the Indians, had learned completely their modes of 
life, their language, and their susceptibility to religious instruction. He 
was without doubt the most earnest, humble, and self-sacrificing priest 
who worked among the North American Indians. His qualifications of 



head and heart fitted him to work in the three-fold capacity of interpre- 
ter, explorer and missionary. 

Joliet was a native of New France, having been born at Quebec in 
1645. He was educated for the priesthood but in early life abandoned 
that profession to engage in the vigorous life of a man of the world in 


business and adventure. He is said to have still retained much sympa- 
thy for the Jesuits, whose ranks he had deserted, and this may be the 
reason he was selected to accompany Marquette on the journey of ex- 

Joliet was directed by Frontenac to proceed to Mackinaw where he 
would be joined by Father Marquette who would represent the church 
on the expedition, as Joliet would the government. While Joliet was 


the official representing the French government, Marquette claimed a 
higher and holier mission. 

December the 8th is the day of the celebration of the feast of the 
Immaculate Conception as kept by the Catholic church. It was on this 
day, December 8, 1672, that Joliet reached the mission of St. Ignace on 
the straits of Mackinaw, on his way to find the great river. Marquette 
in writing this part of the story, says : 

"The day of the Immaculate Conception of the Virgin, whom I had 
always invoked ... to obtain of God the grace to be able to visit 
the nations on the River Mississippi, was identically that on which M. 
Jollyet arrived with orders of the Counte de Frontenac, our Governor, 
and M. Talon, our intendant, to make this discovery with me. I was 
the more enraptured at the good news, as I saw my designs on the point 
of being accomplished, and myself in the happy necessity of exposing 
my life for the salvation of all these nations, and particularly for the 
Illinois . . . who had earnestly entreated me to carry the word of 
God to their country. ' ' 

The preparations were indeed very simple. They consisted in pro- 
viding some Indian corn and dried meat. This was the entire stock of 
provisions with which they started. They left St. Ignace with two bark 
canoes and five French voyageurs, May 17, 1673. 

The prospect before both Joliet and Marquette was such as greatly 
to buoy them up, one looking forward to the conversion of the Indians, 
the other to the conquest of more territory for his king. They rowed 
with a hearty good will and stopped only when night forced them to 
pull to shore. Their course lay along the northern shore of Lake Michi- 
gan bearing toward the southwest. 

Marquette says: 

' ' Above all, I put our voyage under the protection of the Blessed Vir- 
gin Immaculate, promising her, that if she did us the grace to discover 
the great river, I would give it the name of Conception; and that I 
would also give that name to the first mission which I would establish 
among these new nations, as I have actually done among the Illinois." 

The expedition reached Green Bay about the first of June, 1673. 
Here Father Marquette preached to the Indians. These Indians tried 
to dissuade him from his undertaking, but nothing would now turn him 
from his purpose of visiting the Illinois country. At the head of Green 
Bay was a mission planted, probably, by Father Allouez in 1667. To 
this mission they paid a short visit and proceeded up Fox river. At 
an Indian village on the Fox river the travellers were received by the 
warriors of the Kickapoos, the Mascoutins, and the Miamis. A short 
conference was held. Marquette says he was pleased to find here a large 
cross standing in the middle of the village. Here the travellers asked 
for two guides to take them across the portage to the Wisconsin river. 
The guides were cheerfully furnished. 

On June 10, 1673, Marquette, Joliet, and the five Frenchmen, and 
two Indian guides began the journey across the portage. They carried 
their two canoes as well as their provisions and other supplies. The 
portage is a short one, Marquette says three leagues long. It was full 
of small lakes and marshes. When the guides had seen the travellers 
safely over the portage, they returned to their own people. There were 
left here the seven Frenchmen with an unknown country ahead of them, 
but they were filled with the high resolve of finding the Mississippi and 
of visiting the Illinois Indians. 



June the 17th their canoes shot out into the broad Mississippi. The 
voyagers were filled with a joy unspeakable. The journey now began 
down the stream without any ceremony. Marquette made accurate 
observations of the lay of the land, the vegetation, and the animals. 
Among the animals he mentions are deer, moose, and all sorts of fish, 
turkeys, wild cattle, and small game. 

Somewhere, probably below Rock Island, the voyagers discovered 
footprints and they knew that the Illinois were not far away. Mar- 
quette and Joliet left their boats in the keeping of the five Frenchmen 
and after prayers they departed into the interior, following the tracks 
of the Indians. They soon came to an Indian village. The chiefs re- 
ceived the two whites with very great ceremony. The peace pipe was 
smoked and Joliet, who was trained in all the Indian languages, told them 
of the purpose of their visit to this Illinois country. A chief responded 

Drawing by Timothy Ladd, White Hall. Illinois. 


and after giving the two whites some presents, among which were a calu- 
met and an Indian slave boy, the chief warned them not to go further 
down the river for great dangers awaited them. Marquette replied that 
they did not fear death and nothing would please them more than to lose 
their lives in God's service. 

After promising the Indians they would come again, they retired to 
their boats, accompanied by 600 warriors from the village. They de- 
parted from these Indians about the last of June and were soon on their, 
journey down the river. 

As they moved southward the bluffs became quite a marked feature 
of the general landscape. After passing the mouth of the Illinois river, 
they came to unusually high bluffs on the the Illinois side of the Mis- 
sissippi. At a point about six miles above the present city of Alton, 
they discovered on the high smooth-faced bluffs a very strange object, 
which Marquette describes as follows: 

As we coasted along the rocks, frightful for their height and length, 
we saw two monsters painted on these rocks, which startled us at first, 
and on which the boldest Indian dare not gaze long. They are as large 
as a calf, with horns on the head like a deer, a frightful look, red eyes, 
bearded like a tiger, the face somewhat like a man's, the body covered 


with scales, and the tail so long that it twice makes the turn of the body, 
passing over the head and down between the legs, and ending at last in a 
fish's tail. Green, red, and a kind of black are the colors employed. On 
the whole, these two monsters are so well painted that we could not believe 
any Indian to have been the designer, as good painters in Prance would 
find it hard to do as well; besides this, they are so high upon the rock 
that it is hard to get conveniently at them to paint them. This is pretty 
nearly the figure to these monsters as I drew it off. 

In an early day in Illinois, the description of these monsters was 
quite current in the western part of the state. So also was a tradition 
that these monsters actually inhabited a great cave near. (This tradition 
described but a single monster and but a single picture.) The tradition 
said that this monster was a hideous creature with wings, and great 
claws, and great teeth. It was accustomed to devour every living thing 
which came within its reach ; men, women, and children, and animals of 
all kinds. The Indians had suffered great loss of their people from the 
ravages of this monster and a council of war was held to devise some 
means by which its career might be ended. Among other schemes for 
its extermination was a proposition by a certain young warrior. It was 
to the effect that upon the departure of the beast on one of his long 
flights for food that he would volunteer to be securely tied to stakes on 
the ledge in front of the mouth of the cave, and that a sufficient number 
of other warriors of the tribe should be stationed near with their poisoned 
arrows so that when the bird should return from its flight they might 
slay the monster. 

This proposition was accepted and on a certain day the bird took its 
accustomed flight. The young warrior who offered to sacrifice his life 
was securely bound to strong stakes in front of the mouth of the cave. 
The warriors who were to slay the beast were all safely hidden in the 
rocks and debris near. In the afternoon the monster was seen returning 
from its long journey. Upon lighting near its cave, it discovered the 
young warrior and immediately attacked him, fastening its claws and 
teeth in his body. The thongs held him securely and the more the mon- 
ster strove to escape with its prey the more its claws became entangled 
in the thongs. 

At a concerted moment the warriors all about opened upon the mon- 
ster with their poisoned arrows, and before the beast could extricate 
itself, its life blood was ebbing away. The death of the dreaded monster 
had been compassed. 

The warriors took the body of the great monster and stretching it 
out so as to get a good picture of it, marked out the form and painted it 
as it was seen by Marquette. Because the tribes of Indians had suffered 
such destruction of life by this monster, an edict went forth that every 
warrior who went by this bluff should discharge at least one arrow at the 
painting. This the Indians continued religiously to do. In later years 
when guns displaced the arrows among the Indians, they continued to 
shoot at the painting as they passed and thus it is said the face of the 
painting was greatly marred. 

Judge Joseph Gillespie, of Edwardsville, Illinois, a prolific writer 
and a man of unimpeachable character wrote in 1883 as follows : 

I saw what was called the picture sixty years since, long before it 
was marred by quarrymen or the tooth of time, and I never saw any- 
thing which would have impressed my mind that it was intended to 


represent a bird. I saw daubs of coloring matter that I supposed exuded 
from the rocks that might, to very impressible people bear some re- 
semblance to a bird or a dragon, after they were told to look at it in that 
light, just as we fancy in certain arrangements of the stars we see ani- 
mals, etc., in the constellations. I did see the marks of the bullets shot by 
the Indians against the rocks in the vicinity of the so-called picture. 
Their object in shooting at this I never could comprehend. I do not 
think the story had its origin among the Indians or was one of their 
superstitions, but was introduced to the literary world by John Russell, 
of Bluff Dale, Illinois, who wrote a beautiful story about it. 

The bluff has long since disappeared from the use of the stone for 
building purposes. 

As Marquette and Joliet passed on down the river they passed the 
mouth of the Missouri which at that time was probably subject to a great 
flood. When considerably below the mouth of the Kaskaskia river they 
came to a very noted object at least the Indians had many stories about 
it. This is what we know today as the Grand Tower. This great rock 
in the Mississippi causes a great commotion in the water of the river and 
probably was destructive of canoes in those days. 

On they go down the river past the mouth of the Ohio, into the region 
of semi-tropical sun and vegetation. The cane-brakes lined the banks, 
and the mosquitoes became plentiful and very annoying. Here also 
probably in the region of Memphis they stopped and held councils with 
the Indians. They found the Indians using guns, axes, hoes, knives, 
beads, etc., and when questioned as to where they got these articles, they 
said to the eastward. These Indians told the travelers that it was not 
more than ten days' travel to the mouth of the river. They proceeded on 
down the river till they reached Choctaw Bend, in latitude 33 degrees 
and 40 minutes. Here they stopped, held a conference, and decided to 
go no further. 

They justified their return in the following manner : 

First, they were satisfied that the Mississippi emptied into the Gulf 
of Mexico, and not into the Gulf of California, nor into the Atlantic 
ocean in Virginia. Second, they feared a conflict with the Spaniards 
who occupied and claimed the Gulf coast. Third, they feared the Indians 
of the lower Mississippi, for they used firearms and might oppose their 
further progress south. Fourth, they had acquired all the information 
they started out to obtain. 

And so, on the 17th of July, 1673, they turned their faces homeward. 
They had been just two months, from May 17, to July 17, on their jour- 
ney. They had traveled more than a thousand miles. They had faced 
all forms of danger and had undergone all manner of hardships. Their 
provisions had been obtained en route. France owed them a debt of 
gratitude which will never be fully paid. Indeed not only France, but 
the world is their debtor. 

Nothing of interest occurred on their return journey until they 
reached the mouth of the Illinois river. Here they were told by some 
Indians that there was a much shorter route to Green Bay than by 
way of the upper Mississippi and the Wisconsin and Fox portage. 
This shorter route' was up the Illinois river to the Chicago portage and 
then along Lake Michigan to Green Bay. 

Marquette and Joliet proceeded up the Illinois river. When pass- 
ing by Peoria lake they halted for three days. While here Marquette 


preached the gospel to the natives. Just as Marquette was leaving 
they brought him a dying child which he baptized. When in the 
vicinity of Ottawa, they came to a village of the Kaskaskia Indians. 
Marquette says there were seventy-four cabins in the village and that 
the Indians received them kindly. They tarried but a short time and 
were escorted from this point up the Illinois and over the Chicago 
portage by one of the Kaskaskia chiefs and several young warriors. 

While in the village of the Kaskaskias, Marquette told the story 
of the Cross to the natives, and they were so well pleased with it that 
they made him promise to return to teach them more about Jesus. 
Marquette and Joliet reached Green Bay in the month of September, 
1673. Probably they both remained here during the ensuing winter. 
In the summer of 1674, Joliet returned to Quebec to make his report to 
the governor. On his way down the St. Lawrence, his boat upset and 
he came near losing his life. He lost all his maps, papers, etc., and 
was obliged to make a verbal report to the governor. 

Father Marquette remained in the mission of St. Francois Xavier 
through the summer of 1674, and late in the fall started on his journey 
back to Kaskaskia. The escort consisted of two Frenchmen and some 
Indians. They reached the Chicago portage in the midst of dis- 
couraging circumstances. The weather was severe and Father Mar- 
quette, sick unto death, was unable to proceed further. On the banks 
of the Chicago river they built some huts and here the party remained 
till spring. During the winter Father Marquette did not suffer for 
want of attention, for he was visited by a number of Indians and by at 
least two prominent Frenchmen. 

By the last of March he was able to travel. He reached the Kas- 
kaskia village Monday, April 8, 1675. He was received with great joy 
by the Indians. He established the mission of the Immaculate Con- 
ception of the Blessed Virgin. Seeing he could not possibly live long, 
he returned to St. Ignace by way of the Kankakee portage. He never 
lived to reach Mackinaw. He died the 18th of May, 1675. 

This expedition by Marquette and Joliet had carried the Lilies of 
France nearly to the Gulf of Mexico. The Indians in the great plains 
between the Great Lakes and the Gulf had been visited and the re- 
sources of the country noted. There remained but a slight strip of 
territory over which the banner of France had not floated, from the 
Gulf of St. Lawrence to the Gulf of Mexico. If this short distance 
were explored, then the French government would have completely 
surrounded the English colonies in North America. This is the next 
movement for the French as we shall see. 


Chevalier de La Salle came to America in the year 1667. Shortly 
after arriving in this country he established himself as a fur trader at 
a trading post called La Chine, on the island of Montreal. Here he 
came in contact with the Indians from the far west. Within two years 
he had departed on an exploration. For the next two or three years he 
had probably visited the Ohio river and had become quite familiar 
with the country to the south and west of the Great Lakes. 

Count Frontenac built a fort on the shore of Lake Ontario where 
the lake sends its waters into the St. Lawrence river. La Salle was 


put in charge of this fort. He named it Fort Frontenac. The pur- 
pose of this fort was to control the fur trade, especially that from up . 
the Ottawa, and prevent it from going to New York. In 1674 La Salle 
went to France and while there was raised to the rank of a noble. The 
king was greatly pleased with the plans of La Salle and readily granted 
him the seigniory of Fort Frontenac, together with a large quantity of 
land. For all this La Salle promised to keep the fort in repair, to 
maintain a garrison equal to that of Montreal, to clear the land, put 
it in a state of cultivation, and continually to keep arms, ammunition, 
and artillery in the fort. He further agreed to pay Count Frontenac 
for the erection of the fort, to build a church, attract Indians, make 
grants of land to settlers, and to do all for the ultimate purpose of 
furthering the interests of the French government. 

La Salle returned from France and was perhaps at Fort Frontenac 
when Joliet passed down the lakes in the summer of 1674. The next 
year he began the improvement of his fort. For two years he prose- 
cuted a thriving trade with the Indians and also engaged in farming, 
ship-building, cattle-raising, and study. 

The fall of 1678 found him in France with a request that the king 
grant him permission to explore the western part of New France and 
if possible find the mouth of the Mississippi river. La Salle had 
matured plans by which New France was to be connected with the 
western country by a line of strong fortifications. Fort Frontenac 
was the first step in this plan. He there explained how easy it would 
be to reach the region of the Great Lakes by the St. Lawrence route 
or by the Mississippi. There is no doubt that both Frontenac and La 
Salle wished to transfer the emphasis from the conversion of the Indians 
to that of conquest of territory for France, and to the more profitable 
business, as they saw it, of commerce. Frontenac had therefore strongly 
endorsed La Salle and his plans. Through Colbert and his son, La 
Salle succeeded in getting his patent from the king. 


While in France La Salle met Henri de Tonti, an Italian who had 
just won distinction in the French army. His father had been en- 
gaged in an insurrection in Italy and had taken refuge in France where 
he became a great financier, having originated the Tontine system of 
life insurance. Henri de Tonti had lost a hand in one of the cam- 
paigns, but he was nevertheless a man of great energy, and destined to 
win for himself an honored name in the New World. 

La Salle returned to New France in 1678, bringing with him about 
thirty craftsmen and mariners, together with a large supply of mili- 
tary and naval stores. It can readily be seen that La Salle would be 
opposed by the merchants and politicians in the region of Quebec and 
Montreal. He had risen rapidly and was now ready to make one of the 
most pretentious efforts at discovery and exploration that had been 
undertaken in New France. 

Late in the fall of 1678, probably in December, he sent Captain 
LaMotte, and sixteen men to select a suitable site for the building of a 
vessel with which to navigate the upper lakes. Captain LaMotte stopped 
at the rapids below Niagara Falls and seems to have been indifferent 
to his mission. La Salle and Tonti arrived the 8th of January, 1679. 


The next day La Salle went above the falls and selected a place to 
construct the vessel. (The exact place is in doubt, probably at Tona- 
wanda creek.) 

Tonti was charged with building the vessel. It was launched in 
May, 1679, and was christened the Griffin (Griffon). It was of forty- 
five to fifty tons burden and carried a complement of five cannon, and 
is supposed to have cost about $10,000. 

An expedition of traders had been dispatched into the Illinois 
country for the purpose of traffic, in the fall of 1678. Tonti and a 
small party went up Lake Erie and were to await the coming of the 
Griffin at the head of the lake. The Griffin weighed anchor August 7, 
1679, amid the booming of cannon and the chanting of the Te Deum. 
It arrived at what is now Detroit on the 10th, and there found Tonti 
and his party. The vessel reached Mackinaw on the 27th of August. 
Here La Salle found the men whom he had dispatched the year before 
to traffic with the Indians. He found they had been dissuaded from 
proceeding to the Illinois country by the report that La Salle was 
visionary and that his ship would never reach Mackinaw. Tonti was 
given the task of getting these men together, and while he was thus 
engaged, La Salle sailed in the Griffin for Green Bay. 

Green Bay had been for several years a meeting place between white 
traders and explorers, and the Indians. When La Salle reached the 
point, he found some of the traders whom he had sent ahead the year 
before. These traders had collected from the Pottowatomies large 
quantities of furs. For these furs La Salle exchanged a large stock of 
European goods with which the Griffin was loaded. It is said that he 
made a large sum of money in this transaction. The Griffin was loaded 
with these furs and made ready to return to the warehouses at Niagara. 

On September the 18th, the Griffin, in charge of a trusted pilot, a 
supercargo, and five sailors, started on the return voyage. La Salle on 
the 19th of September, 1679, with a company of fourteen persons, in 
four birch bark canoes, loaded with a blacksmith's forge, carpenter's 
tools, merchandise, arms, provision, etc., started on his journey for the 
Illinois country. He coasted along the western shore of Lake Michi- 
gan. Their provision was exhausted before they reached the present 
site of Milwaukee. They had been forced ashore three times to save 
their boats and their lives. They now went in search of food and for- 
tunately found a deserted Indian village with plenty of corn. They 
appropriated the corn, but left some articles as pay. The next day the 
Indians returned and followed the whites to their boats and it was only 
by presenting the calumet that La Salle was able to appease them. 

From Milwaukee they coasted south past the mouth of the Chicago 
river and following the southerly bend of the lake reached the mouth of 
the St. Joseph river November 1, 1679. This had been appointed as the 
meeting place of the two expeditions the one under La Salle and the 
one under Tonti. La Salle was anxious to get to the Illinois country, 
but he also desired the help of Tonti and as the latter had not yet ar- 
rived, La Salle occupied the time of his men in building a palisade fort 
which he named Fort Miami. Near by, he erected a bark chapel for 
the use of the priests, and also a storehouse for the goods which the 
Griffin was to bring from Niagara on its return. 

Tonti arrived at Fort Miami on the 12th of November with only a 
portion of his company, the rest remaining behind to bring word of the 


Griffin. La Salle was now impatient to proceed, and dispatching Tonti 
for the rest of his crew waited for his return. The ice began to form 
and fearing the freezing over of the river, La Salle ascended the St. 
Joseph in search of the portage between the Kankakee and the St. 
Joseph. He went up the St. Joseph beyond the portage and while 
searching for it, was overtaken by a courier who told him Tonti and 
his party were at the portage farther down the river. .This point is 
supposed to have been near the present city of South Bend, Indiana. 
Here was now assembled the party which was to become a very historic 
one. There were in all twenty-nine Frenchmen and one Indian. Among 
them were La Salle, De Tonti, Fathers Louis Hennepin, Zenobe Mem- 
bre, and Gabriel de La Ribourde, and La Metairie, a notary, and De 
Loup, the Indian guide. They crossed the portage of three or four 
miles under great difficulties, dragging their canoes and their burdens 
on sledges. The ice was getting thick and a heavy snow storm was 
raging. By the 6th of December, 1679, they were afloat on the Kan- 
kakee. For many miles the country was so marshy that scarcely a 
camping place could be found, but soon they emerged into an open re- 
gion of the country with tall grass and then they knew they were in 
the Illinois country. They suffered from lack of food, having killed 
only two deer, one buffalo, two geese, and a few swans. As they jour- 
neyed on they passed the mouths of the Iroquois, the Des Plaines, and the 
Fox. They passed the present site of Ottawa and a few miles below they 
came to the Kaskaskia village where Marquette had planted the mis- 
sion of the Immaculate Conception in the summer of 1675. Father 
Allouez had succeeded Marquette and had spent some time at the 
Kaskaskia village in 1676, and in 1677 he came again. But on the ap- 
proach of La Salle Allouez had departed for it was understood that 
almost all of the Jesuit priests were opposed to La Salle 's plans of 
commercializing the interior of North America. The Kaskaskia In- 
dians were themselves absent from the village on an expedition to the 
south-land as was their winter custom. 

This Kaskaskia village of four hundred lodges was uninhabited. 
The huts were built by covering a long arbor-like frame work with 
mats of woven rushes. In each lodge there was room for as many as 
ten families. In their hiding places, the Indians had secreted large 
quantities of corn for the spring planting and for sustenance till an- 
other crop could be raised. La Salle 's party was so sorely in need of 
this corn that he decided to appropriate as much as they needed. This 
he did, taking 30 minots. On January 1, 1680, after mass by Father 
Hennepin, they departed down the Illinois river. On the morning of 
the 5th they had arrived at the outlet of what we call Peoria lake. 
Here they saw large numbers of boats and on the banks wigwams and 
large numbers of Indians. The Indians were much disconcerted upon 
seeing La Salle 's party land, and many fled while a few held communi- 
cation with the newcomers. La Salle held a consultation with the chiefs 
and told them of his taking their corn. He offered to pay for the corn 
and said that if he were compelled to give up the corn he would take 
his blacksmith and his tools to the next tribe, the Osages, whereupon 
the Indians gladly accepted pay for the corn taken and offered more. 

La Salle told them he wished to be on friendly terms with them, 
but that they must not expect him to engage in conflicts with the Iro- 
quois whom his king regarded as his children. But if they would al- 


low him to build a fort near, that he would defend them, the Kaskas- 
kias, against the Iroquois if they were attacked. He also told them he 
wished to know whether he could navigate a large boat from that point 
to the mouth of the Mississippi river, since it was very difficult as well 
as dangerous to bring such European goods as the Indians would like 
to have from New France by way of the Great Lakes, and that it could 
not well be done by coming across the Iroquois country as they would 
object since the Illinois Indians and the Iroquois were enemies. 

The Kaskaskia chiefs told La, Salle that the mouth of the Mississippi 
was only twenty days ' travel away and that there were no obstructions 
to navigation. Certain Indian slaves taken in battle said they had 
been at the mouth of the river and that they had seen ships at sea that 
made noises like thunder. This made La Salle the more anxious to 
reach the mouth of the river and take possession of the country. The 
chiefs gave consent to the construction of the fort and La Salle had 
a bright vision before him. This vision was sadly clouded on the mor- 
row when an Indian revealed to him the visit to the chiefs, on the night 
before, of a Miami chief by the name of Monso who tried to undermine 
the influence of La Salle. He said La Salle was deceiving them. In a 
council that day he revealed his knowledge of the visit of Monso and 
by great diplomacy won the Kaskaskia chiefs to his cause the second 
time. It was supposed this chief Monso was sent at the suggestion of 
Father Allouez. Four of La Salle 's men deserted him and returned 
to the region of Lake Michigan. 

La Salle, fearing the influence of the stories among the Indians, up- 
on his men, decided to separate from them and go further down the 
river where he could construct his fort and built his boat. On the 
evening of the 15th of January, 1680, La Salle moved to a point on the 
east side of the river three miles below the present site of Peoria. There 
on a projection from the bluffs he built with considerable labor a fort 
which received the name of Crevecceur. This was the fourth of the 
great chains of forts which La Salle had constructed, namely: Fort 
Frontenac at the outlet of Lake Ontario; Fort Conti on the Niagara 
river ; Fort Miami at the mouth of St. Joseph river, and Crevecceur be- 
low Lake Peoria on the Illinois river. 

Fort Crevecceur is currently believed to have been so named because 
of the disheartened frame of mind of La Salle, but this would not be 
complimentary to the character of the man. It is now rather believed 
to have been named in honor of Tonti, since as a soldier in the Nether- 
lands he took part in the destruction of Fort Crevecceur near the vil- 
lage of Bois le Due in the year 1672. 

In addition to the building of the fort, La Salle began the construc- 
tion of a vessel with which to complete his journey to the mouth of 
the river. The lumber was sawed from the timber and rapid progress 
was made. The keel was 42 feet long, and the beam was 12 feet. While 
this work was in progress and during the month of February, several 
representatives of tribes from up the Mississippi and down the Missis- 
sippi, as well as from the Miamis to the northeast, came to consult 
with La Salle. His presence in the Illinois country was known far and 
near. The Indians from the upper Mississippi brought tempting de- 
scriptions of routes to the western sea and also of the wealth of beaver 
with which their country abounded. 

La Salle desired to make a visit to Fort Frontenac for sails, cord- 



age, iron, and other material for his boat, besides he was very anxious 
to hear something definite about the Griffin and its valuable cargo. 
But before embarking on his long journey, he fitted out an expedition 
consisting of Michael Ako, Antony Auguel, and Father Hennepin, to 
explore the upper Mississippi. Michael Ako was the leader. They 
started February the 29th, passed down the Illinois river and thence 
up the Mississippi. They carried goods worth a thousand livres, which 
were to be exchanged for furs. Father Hennepin took St. Anthony 
for his patron saint and when near the falls which we know by that 
name, he set up a post upon which he engraved the cross and the coat of 
arms of France. He was shortly captured by the Indians and was later 
released by a French trader, De Lhut. He then returned to France. 

Before starting for Frontenac, La Salle commissioned Tonti to have 
charge of the Crevecoeur fort, and also to build a fort at Starved Rock. 
On March 1, the day following the departure of Ako and Ilennepin 


for the upper Mississippi, La Salle departed, with three companions, 
for Fort Frontenac. This was a long, dangerous, and discouraging 
journey. Every venture which he had engaged in seems to have failed. 
After finally getting together supplies such as were needed, he started 
on his return journey. He was continually hearing stories from the 
travellers of the desertion of Crevecceur. When he came within a few 
miles of the Kaskaskia village he began to see signs of destruction. 
On arriving at the village nothing but a few blackened posts remained. 
The Iroquois Indians had made a campaign against the Illinois Indians 
and their trail could be traced by death and destruction. 

When La Salle left the locality of Starved Rock for Fort Creve- 
coeur, on his way from Canada, he passed the Iroquois on one side of 
the river and the Illinois on the other. He searched everywhere for 
Tonti but could find no trace of him. He came to Crevecoeur about the 
first of December, 1680, and found the fort deserted and the store- 
house plundered; the boat, however, was without damage. La Salle 
went to the mouth of the Illinois river in search of Tonti but without 
success. He returned to Fort Miami in the spring of 1681. Here he 
began the organization of all the Indian tribes into a sort of confedera- 

Upon the approach of the Iroquois shortly after the departure of 


La Salle from Fort Crevecoeur, in March, 1680, Tonti and his party 
were scattered far and near. Tonti and Father Membre made their way 
to Green Bay and from there to Mackinaw. La Salle heard of them 
here and went immediately to them. Another expedition was organ- 
ized. La Salle, Father Membre, and Tonti visited Fort Frontenac 
where supplies were procured and late in December, 1681, the expedi- 
tion had crossed the Chicago portage. There were in this company 
fifty-four pople twenty-three Frenchmen and thirty-one Indians. 

They passed the Kaskaskia village near Starved Rock but it was in 
ruins. On January the 25th, 1682, they reached Fort Crevecoeur. The 
fort was in fair condition. Here they halted six days, while the In- 
dians made some elm bark canoes. They reached the Mississippi the 
6th of February. After a little delay they proceeded down the river, 
passed the mouth of the Missouri and shortly after that a village of the 
Tamaroa Indians. The village contained one hundred and twenty 
cabins, but they were all deserted. La Salle left presents on the posts 
for the villagers when they returned. Grand Tower was passed, later 
the Ohio. The trip to the mouth of the Mississippi was without special 
interest. They reached the mouth of the river in April, and on the 
ninth of that month erected a post upon which they nailed the arras 
of France wrought from a copper kettle. A proclamation was pre- 
pared by the notary, Jacques de la Metairie, and read. It recited 
briefly their journey and a formal statement of the King's taking pos- 
session of the country drained by the Mississippi and its tributaries. 

On the 10th of April the party began the return journey. La Salle 
was stricken with a severe illness and was obliged to remain at Fort 
Prudhomme which had been erected on the Chickasaw bluffs just above 
Vicksburg. Tonti was sent forward to look after his leader's interest. 
He went by Fort Miami, but found everything in order. He reached 
Mackinaw the 22d of July. 

La Salle reached Crevecceur on his way north. He left eight 
Frenchmen here to hold this position. He reached Fort Miami, and 
from there passed on to Mackinaw. From there he sent Father Mem- 
bre to France to report his discovery to the king, while he himself set 
about the building of Fort St. Louis, on Starved Rock. The detach- 
ment left by La Salle at Crevecoeur was ordered north to Fort St. 
Louis, and he began to grant his followers small areas of land in recog- 
nition of their services with him in the past few years. The fort was 
completed and in March, 1683, the ensign of France floated to the breeze. 
The tribes for miles in circuit came to the valley about the fort and 
encamped. La Salle patiently looked for French settlers from New 
France but they did not come. 

During the absence of La Salle at the mouth of the Mississippi, 
Count Frontenac had been superseded by Sieur de La Barre, who had 
assumed the duties of his office October 9, 1682. He was not friendly 
to La Salle 's schemes of extending the possessions of France in the 
New World. La Salle suspected in the summer of 1683 that the new 
governor was not in sympathy with him. And after a great deal of 
fruitless correspondence with the new governor. La Salle repaired to 
France to lay before the king his new discoveries as well as plans for 
the future. Tonti was displaced as commander at Fort St. Louis and 
ordered to Quebec. La Salle not only secured a fleet for the trip to the 
mouth of the Mississippi, but also had Tonti restored to command at 


Fort St. Louis. La Salle sailed to the Gulf in the spring of 1685. He 
failed to find the mouth of the river and landed in what is now Texas. 
After hardships and discouragement almost beyond belief, he was 
murdered by some of his own men the latter part of March, 1687. 

La Salle went to France in the summer of 1683 and left Tonti in 
charge of his interests in the Illinois country. Tonti was active in the 
defense of his superior 's interest. In this duty he was forced to defend 
the Illinois country against the Iroquois, and to struggle against La 
Salle 's enemies in New France. He made expeditions of trade and 
exploration throughout all the western country, took part in a great 
campaign against the Iroquois, and was the life of a growing com- 
munity around Fort St. Louis. 

The death of La Salle occurred in the spring of 1687. Just one 
year previous to this Tonti had made a trip to the Gulf in search of 
La Salle but failing to find him returned sorrowfully to Fort St. Louis. 
In September, 1688, Tonti heard definitely of the death of La Salle. 
In December of that year he organized an expedition to rescue the 
colonists whom La Salle had left on the coast of the Gulf. This expe- 
dition also proved a failure. For the next ten years Tonti remained 
in the region of the Lakes, but when Bienville began planting new set- 
tlements near the mouth of the Mississippi river, Tonti abandoned Fort 
St Louis and joined the new settlements. He died near Mobile in 1704. 



Prior to the close of the seventeenth century, there were at least 
four points where permanent settlements might easily have been 
planted. These were at Chicago, Fort St. Louis, the Kaskaskia vil- 
lage below Ottawa, and at Fort Crevecceur. Whether any of them 
ought to be regarded as the first settlement is doubtful. Some have 
contended that Kaskaskia and Cahokia in the American bottom were 
settled as early as the return of La Salle from the mouth of the Mis- 
sissippi in the year 1682. Again others have claimed that Tonti 
planted Kaskaskia in 1686, but Tonti accompanied St. Cosme, the mis- 
sionary, down the Mississippi in the year 1699. On the 5th of Decem- 
ber of that year they reached the Mississippi from the Illinois and the 
next day which would be the 6th they reached the village of the Ta- 
maroa Indians which was evidently the village of Cahokia. These In- 
dians had never seen a "black gown" which is good proof that there 
was no mission at that point. A few days later they erected a cross 
on a high bluff on the right bank of the Mississippi river and "prayed 
that God might grant that the cross which had never been known in 
those regions, might triumph there." The point was marked on an 
old map about fifteen miles below the present mouth of the Kaskaskia 


Father James Gravier, who was the priest in charge of the mission 
of the Immaculate Conception in 1695 and again in 1703, made a jour- 
ney from the portage of Chicago down the Illinois river in September, 
1700, and says when he arrived at the Kaskaskia mission which was 
then in charge of Father Marest that the people had moved down the 
river. He seems to have overtaken them on the Illinois river and to 
have marched with them four days. He left Father Marest sick at the 
village of the Tamaroas (Cahokia) and proceeded down the river. 
Shortly after this the mission was located at the village of Kaskaskia 
a few miles above the mouth of the river of the same name. 

The records of the church of the "Immaculate Conception of our 
Lady" now in possession of the priest in charge at New Kaskaskia, 
show that baptisms were performed upon children born in the parish 
three in 1695. one in 1697. two in 1698, two in 1699, one in 1700, one 
in 1701, two in 1702, etc. 

Vol. T 4 




The Indians and the few Frenchmen who came to the Kaskaskia 
of the last century built their huts by weaving grasses and reeds into 
a frame-work of upright poles set in rectangular form. The roof was 
thatched as was the custom among the Indians. The ground was very 
rich and a rude sort of agriculture was begun. In those days, the 
travel up and down the Mississippi was considerable. The French 




were just taking possession of the mouth of the river and there was 
need of communication with New France and hence the travel. 

A very interesting picture has been given of the life in this village. 
The Kaskaskia church records show that on March 20, 1695, James 
Gravier was the priest in charge. September 7, 1699, Gabriel Marest 
was officially connected with the church. April 13, 1703, James Gra- 
vier officiated. In 1707, January 19, P. J. Mermet officiated in the bap- 
tism of an infant. Father Marest says of Mermet that he was the soul 
of the mission, and in describing his work says : 

The gentle virtues and fervid eloquence of Mermet made him the 
soul of the Mission of Kaskaskia. At early dawn his pupils came to 


church, dressed neatly and modestly each in a deer-skin or a robe 
sewn together from several skins. After receiving lessons they chanted 
canticles; mass was then said in presence of all the Christians, the 
French, and the converts the women on one side and the men on 
the other. From prayers and instruction the missionaries proceeded 
to visit the sick and administer medicine, and their skill as physicians 
did more than all the rest to win confidence. In the afternoon the 
catechism was taught in the presence of the young and the old, when 
every one without distinction of rank or age answered the questions 
of the missionary. At evening all would assemble at the chapel for 
instruction, for prayer, and to chant the hymns of the church. On 
Sundays and festivals, even after vespers, a homily was pronounced; 
at the close of the day parties would meet in houses to recite the chap- 
lets in alternate choirs and sing psalms till late at night. These psalms 
were often homilies, with words set to familiar tunes. Saturdays and 
Sundays were the days appointed for confession and communion, and 
every convert confessed once in a fortnight. The success of this was 
such that marriages of the French immigrants were sometimes solem- 
nized with the daughters of Illinois, according to the rites of the Cath- 
olic church. The occupation of the country was a cantonment among 
the native proprietors of the forests and prairies. 

From this we see that apparently one of the chief interests of the 
colony was religious. And without doubt the priest did exert great 
influence over the settlement. But we must not forget that the trader 
was abroad in the land. His influence with the Indians was not less 
marked than that of the priest. He held in his grasp the means by 
which the Indians could be influenced for good if he wished, for ill if 
he chose. He had long since discovered that blankets and knives, 
and calicoes, and fire water exerted very great influence upon the na- 
tives. The trader and the priest were for several years the dominant 
factors in the community life of our first permanent settlement. 
Every one hunted and fished, and all conformed largely to the habits 
and customs of the Indians. 

Cahokia was situated a very short distance below the present city 
of East St. Louis, probably six miles from the Relay depot. This was 
called the "Mission of St. Sulpice. " The early priests who labored 
here were Fathers Pinet and Bineteau. Pinet is said to have preached 
with such power and attractiveness that his chapel could not hold the 
multitudes who came to hear him. Bineteau wandered off with a band 
of Indians and died in the interior of the country. After the death 
of Pinet, Father Gabriel Marest came to this mission. Cahokia was 
a good trading point with the northern Indians. Evidently the Peo- 
rias traded with Cahokia people, for in 1711 Father Marest left 
Cahokia to serve the Peoria Indians, and this action was taken after 
what appears to be some pleading. The soil was fertile and its cul- 
tivation commenced at an early date. The village was first built on the 
east bank of the Mississippi and on a little creek which flowed across 
the alluvial bottom. By 1721, the Mississippi had carved a new chan- 
nel westward so that the village was one-half league from the river. 
The little creek also took another course and thus the village was left 
inland. Cahokia as well as Kaskaskia received quite an increase in 
French population in 1708, and farming was begun in some systematic 



When La Salle went to France in 1683 and got permission to or- 
ganize a fleet, it was his intention to come into the Illinois country by 
way of the mouth of the Mississippi, and thus avoid having to pass 
through New France where his enemies would have delighted to thwart 
all his plans. He missed the mouth of the river, lost his life, and the 
expedition ended in failure. But the king who had just signed a 
treaty of peace with England (at the close of King William's war), 
saw the necessity of possessing the mouth of the Mississippi river. 
Expeditions were therefore organized to take possession of the Louis- 
iana country, by way of the mouth of the great river. Iberville sailed 
from France in 1698 with two ships expecting to enter the mouth of 
the Mississippi. He anchored in Mobile bay and reached the Missis- 
sippi by small boats. Here he was given a letter which Tonti had writ- 
ten while searching for La Salle in 1686. The letter had been left in 
the forks of a tree. Iberville now knew he was on the Mississippi 
river. Not finding a good place to plant a colony he returned to Mo- 
bile bay and began a settlement at what came to be Biloxi. From now 
on for the next half century every move by the French government meant 
the completion of a great chain of fortresses between the mouth of the 
great river and New France. All the territory drained by the Mississippi 
was named Louisiana by La Salle. It thus occurred that Illinois came 
to be a part of Louisiana. 

From 1702 to 1713, France waged war against England. This is 
what is usually known as Queen Anne's war. The immediate effect of 
this was not felt in the Louisiana territory. The struggle in the New 
World was confined to the regions of New England, and New France. 
The end of the war found England in possession of Acadia and of 
the region around Hudson bay. However, France had shown her 
strength by repelling all attempts of England to get control of the St. 
Lawrence river. 

While the war was in progress France was not altogether unmind- 
ful of her new territory of Louisiana. During the period prior to 1712, 
two thousand five hundred settlers came to Louisiana by way of the 
Gulf of Mexico. In 1712, only four hundred whites and twenty negro 
slaves were to be found in Louisiana. The yellow fever raged at Biloxi 
in 1708 and only fourteen officers, seventy-six soldiers, and thirteen 
sailors were spared. By 1712 the colony was on its feet again and 
very flattering reports went to France about Louisiana and especially 
of the Illinois country. 


The English colonists who came to the Atlantic coast in the early 
part of the seventeenth century were not the only colonists who spent 
their time and energy in looking for precious stones and precious 
metals. The French traders and explorers were continually dreaming 
of gold, silver, and other precious products of the earth. It was gen- 
erally believed in France that the interior of the New World was rich 
in mineral wealth. 

The wars which the king was forced to carry on had deprived him, 
so he thought, of the opportunity to open these rich mines and thus 
replenish a depleted treasury. He therefore concluded that rather 
than delay in the matter he would better grant the monopoly of the 


trade and commerce in the Louisiana region to some one who could 
and would develop its wonderful wealth. In looking around for some 
one in whom he could repose such a great undertaking, he settled on 
one Anthony Crozat, a very rich merchant of Paris, and a man who 
had on former occasions rendered great service to the king and to the 
kingdom. The king therefore issued a proclamation creating letters 
patent and granting to the said Crozat the following monopoly for a 
period of fifteen years. (Abridged) : 

And, whereas, upon the information we have received, concerning 
the disposition and situation of the said countries, known at present, 
by the name of Louisiana, we are of the opinion that there may be 
established therein a considerable commerce, so much the more advan- 
tageous to our kingdom, in that there has hitherto been a necessity of 
fetching from foreigners the greatest part of the commodities which 
may be brought from thence ; and because, in exchange thereof, we 
need carry thither nothing but commodities of the growth and manu- 
facture of our own kingdom; . . . 

We have resolved to grant the commerce of the country of Louisiana, 
to the Sieur Anthony Crozat, our councillor, secretary of the house- 
hold, crown and revenue, to whom we intrust the execution of this 

We permit him to search for, open, and dig all sorts of mines, veins, 
and minerals, throughout the whole extent of the said country of 
Louisiana, and to transport the profits thereof to any port of Prance, 
during the said fifteen years, . . . 

We likewise permit him to search for precious stones and pearls, 
paying us the fifth part in the same manner as is mentioned for gold 
and silver. 

Our edicts, ordinances, and customs, and the usages of the mayoralty 
and shrievalty of Paris, shall be observed for laws and customs in the 
said country of Louisiana. 

This grant to Crozat empowered him to open mines of gold, silver, 
etc., to search for stones and pearls, to discover new lands, to control 
the commerce, trade, etc., and to retain this privilege for fifteen years. 
Crozat was to pay to the king one-fifth part of all gold, silver, precious 
stones, etc. The territory was understood to be the region drained by 
the Mississippi river and its tributaries. It is said that Crozat was 
authorized to bring slaves to the Louisiana territory. Antoine Cadillac 
who had, in the year 1701, founded Detroit, was made governor of 
Louisiana and was given a share in the profits of Crozat 's grant. They 
were very deeply interested in the commerce as well as in the mineral 
wealth of the Louisiana country. Two pieces of silver ore from Mexico 
were shown the governor at Kaskaskia and he was wild with joy and 
excitement at the prospect of mines of untold wealth. He visited the 
regions around the lakes and made discoveries of lead and copper but 
no silver or gold was found. This grant to Crozat seems to nave had 
the effect of killing the interest in trade and commerce in the Louisiana 
country. There seems to have been quite a deal of jealousy among the 
French traders toward Crozat. They grew tired of his monopoly, the 
English and Spanish did everything they could to cripple his interests, 
"and every Frenchman in Louisiana was not only hostile to his in- 
terests, but was aiding and assisting to foment difficulties in the colony. ' ' 
Crozat in five years spent 425,000 livres and received in return in 


trade 300,000 livres, a loss of 125,000 livres in five years. He resigned 
his grant to the crown in 1717. 

It so happened that at the time Crozat surrendered his grant to the 
crown, that there was being formed in France a company which is 
known by several names, but usually called the Western Company. 
John Law, the great Scotch financier, was at the head of this company. 
Its purpose was to re-enforce the finances of France. It was expected 
that large plantations would be begun in Louisiana, mines opened, and 
extensive trade carried on in furs and farm products, and large returns 
were expected to come from all this. Emigrants poured into the Louis- 
iana country. Over 800 arrived in August, 1717. Law sent 300 slaves 
to the territory, and French and German emigrants were freely trans- 
ported to the Mississippi valley. Following Cadillac, came Governor 
1'Epinay, who served only a short time. Bienville, who was formerly 
connected with the province, was then made governor. He founded 
New Orleans in 1718. In that same year, December, there arrived at 
Kaskaskia a Lieutenant Boisbriant with about a hundred soldiers, with 
orders to assume military command of the Illinois district in the 
Province of Louisiana. 

Boisbriant came as the king's military representative with authority 
to hold the country and defend the king's subjects. He was also au- 
thorized to build a fort. The place selected for the fort was a point 
about sixteen miles to the northwest of Kaskaskia, on the alluvial bot- 
toms of the Mississippi river. The structure was of wood and was 
probably made of two rows of vertical logs filled between with earth. 
It was named Fort de Chartres, presumably after the king's son, whose 
title was Due de Chartres. Inside the palisaded .walls were the officers ' 
quarters and a storehouse for the company's goods. It is said that an 
old fort built by Crozat stood near by. Fort Chartres, as constructed 
by Boisbriant, stood for thirty years and was the center of great mili- 
tary, civil, and social life. We shall have occasion to refer to Fort 
Chartres again. 

The fort was barely done when there arrived Phillipe Francois de 
Renault, a representative of the Company of the West, in fact he was 
director general of the mining operations of the company. He had left 
France the year before, in the spring of 1719, with 200 miners, laborers, 
and a full complement of mining utensils. On his way to the Province 
of Louisiana he bought in St. Domingo, 500 Guinea negroes to work 
the mines and plantations of the province. These were not all brought 
to the Illinois district, but a large number was, and this is the origin of 
slavery in the state of Illinois. In 1719, also, 500 Guinea negroes were 
brought > to the region of New Orleans and Natchez. Thus by 1722, 
1,000 negro slaves were in the Mississippi valley. 

Renault made Fort Chartres his headquarters for a short time, and 
from here he sent his expert miners and skilled workmen in every direc- 
, tion hunting for the precious metals. The bluffs skirting the American 
Bottoms on the east were diligently searched for minerals, but nothing 
encouraging was found. In what is now Jackson, Randolph, and St. 
Clair counties the ancient traces of furnaces were visible as late as 
1850. Silver creek, which runs south and through Madison and St. 
Clair counties, was so named on the supposition that the metal was 
plentiful along that stream. 

Failing to discover any metals or precious stones, Renault turned 


his attention to the cultivation of the land in order to support his 

May 10, 1722, the military commandant, Lieutenant Boisbriant, 
representing the king, and Des Ursins representing the Royal Indes 
Company (the Company of the West), granted to Charles Davie a 
tract of land 5 arpents wide (58.35 rods) and reaching from the Kas- 
kaskia on the east to the Mississippi on the west. This is said to have 
been the first grant of land made in the Illinois district in Louisiana. 

The next year, June 14, the same officials made a grant to Renault 
of a tract of land abutting or facing on the Mississippi, more than three 
miles wide and extending backward northeast into the country six 
miles. This tract contained more than 13,000 acres of land. It reached 
back to the bluffs, probably four to five miles. It is said the grant was 
made in consideration of the labor of Renault's slaves, probably upon 
some work belonging to the Company of the West. This grant was up 
the Mississippi three and a half miles above Fort Chartres. The vil- 
lage of St. Phillipe was probably started before the grant was made, at 
least the village was on the grant. 


As soon as Fort Chartres was complete there grew up a village near 
by, which usually went by the name of New Chartres. About the year 
1722 the village -of Prairie du Rocher was begun. It was located near 
the bluffs due east from Fort Chartres about three and a half miles. 
It is said that some of the houses were built of stone, there being an 
abundance of that material in the bluffs just back of the village. To 
this village there was granted a very large "common" which it holds 
to this day. The common is about three miles square and lies back of 
the village upon the upland. 

There were, probably, as early as 1725, five permanent French vil- 
lages in the American Bottom, namely: Cahokia, settled not earlier 
than 1698, and not later than 1700 ; Kaskaskia, settled in the latter part 
of the year 1700, or in the beginning of the year 1701 ; New Chartres, 
the village about Fort Chartres, commenced about the same time the 
fort was erected, 1720; Prairie du Rocher, settled about 1722, or pos- 
sibly as late as the grant to Boisbriant, which was in 1733 ; St. Phillipe, 
settled very soon after Renault received the grant from the Western 
Company, which was 1723. 

The villages were all much alike. They were a straggling lot of 
crude cabins, built with little if any reference to streets, and con- 
structed with no pretension to architectural beauty. The inhabitants 
were French, and Indians, and negroes. 

The industrial life of these people consisted of fishing and hunting, 
cultivation of the soil, commercial transactions, some manufacturing, 
and mining. The fishing and hunting was partly a pastime, but the 
table was often liberally supplied from this source. The soil was fer- 
tile and yielded abundantly to a very indifferent cultivation. Wheat 
was grown and the grain ground in crude water mills usually situated 
at the mouths of the streams as they emerged from the bluffs. And it 
is said one windmill was erected in the bottom. They had swine and 
black cattle, says Father Charlevoix, in 1721. The Indians raised 
poultry, spun the wool of the buffalo and wove a cloth which they dyed 
black, yellow, or red. 



In the first thirty or forty years of the eighteenth century, there 
was considerable commerce carried on between these villages and the 
mouth of the river. New Orleans was established in 1818 and came to 
be, in a very early day, an important shipping point. The gristmills 
ground the wheat which the farmers raised in the bottom and the flour 


was shipped in keel boats and flatboats. Fifteen thousand deer skins 
were sent in one year to New Orleans. Buffalo meat and other products 
of the forest, as well as the produce of the farms, made up the cargoes. 
Considerable lead was early shipped to the mother country. 

The return vessels brought the colonists rice, sugar, coffee, manu- 
factured articles of all kinds, tools, implements, and munitions of war. 


The boatmen suffered great hardships in bringing their cargoes 
from New Orleans up the Mississippi river. These brave men were 
obliged to endure all kinds of weather. They were subject to the fevers 
incident to a life on the water in a hot climate. The treacherous Indians 
lined the banks, and life on the boats was never safe. They had often 
to pull their boats up the strong current by means of long ropes. But 
with all this the boatmen were the happiest of all the people. 

The social life of these people was one of pleasure. It is said they 
passed much of their time in singing, dancing, and gaming. The 
Frenchmen married the squaws of the different tribes and this of 
necessity lowered the tone of the social life. The population became 
mixed, and consequently degenerated. There can be little doubt that 
there were many illegitimate children born. The parish records might' 
lead one to suppose this for they are not uniform in their statement 
that all children are born of legitimate marriages. The following is 
from the parish records of the St. Anne church: 

In the year 1743, on the 28th of December of the same year, I, the 
undersigned, N. Laurent, priest, missionary apostolic, I baptized in the 
absence of M. J. Gagnon, missionary of St. Anne's parish of Fort 
Chartres, a daughter, born in the same month and day mentioned above, 
of the legitimate marriage of Andrew Thomas des Jardius and of 
Marie Joseph Larette. . . . 


The common people were modest in their apparel. They wore the 
cheaper fabrics. In summer coarse cotton cloth, while in winter coarse 
woolen blankets were much prized. Handkerchiefs were worn over the 
heads by men and women. 

While they were light hearted they were light headed as well, and 
thriftless; the poorer portion laboring long enough to gain a bare sub- 
sistence each passing day, the rest of the time being spent in sporting, 
hunting, and wine drinking. 

There was entire harmony with regard to religious matters. Every 
one was a member of the church. The Indians in most cases were re- 
garded as members. There were churches in all the villages except pos- 
sibly in St. Phillipe. The daily requirements of the church have been 
pointed out in the preceding pages. 

Schools were unknown at least the kind of schools we are familiar 
with. The priests may have given some instruction in the rudiments 
of an education. Certainly something was done in the line of instruc- 
tion for it is stated that a college was founded in Kaska.skia as early as 
1721, and in connection a monastery was erected. 

The government was very simple, at least until about 1730. From 
the settlement in 1700 up to the coming of Crozat there was no civil gov- 
ernment. Controversies were few and the priest's influence was such 
that all disputes which arose were settled by that personage. Recently, 
documents have been recovered from the courthouse in Chester which 
throw considerable light upon the question of government in the French 
villages, but as yet they have not been thoroughly sorted and inter- 

The Company of the West realized that its task of developing the 
territory of Louisiana was an unprofitable one, and they surrendered 
their charter to the king, and Louisiana became, as we are accustomed 
to say, a royal province by proclamation of the king, April 10, 1732. 


The two efforts, the one by Crozat and the other by the Company of 
the West had both resulted in failure so far as profit to either was con- 
cerned. Crozat had spent 425,000 livres and realized in return only 
300,000 livres. And although a rich man, the venture ruined him finan- 
cially. The Company of the West put thousands of dollars into the at- 
tempt to develop the territory for which no money in return was ever 
received. But the efforts of both were a lasting good to the territory 
itself. Possibly the knowledge of the geography of the country which 
resulted from the explorations in search of precious metals, was not the 
least valuable. Among other things, these two efforts brought an ad- 
venturous class of people into Illinois and this put life into the sleepy 
ongoing of priest and parishioner. 


The life of the people in the new village of Kaskaskia is somewhat 
difficult to reconstruct in our minds since few records are available 
which give very definite accounts of it. However, we may safely con- 
jecture that the village of Kaskaskia became the leading town between 
the lakes and the gulf. Fort St. Louis was abandoned almost entirely 
by the beginning of 1700. Peoria was never occupied permanently by 
whites. Cahokia was possibly a rival of Kaskaskia, but never equaled 
it in importance or in size. The settlers at the mouth of the Mississippi, 
and the people of New France were constantly passing and repassing 
the village of Kaskaskia. It was a sort of meeting point between the 
north and the south. 

There can be little doubt that permanent houses were built of tim- 
ber, brush, and grasses. The Frenchmen were traders, trappers, and 
voyageurs. They married the Indian women and there rapidly grew up 
a half-breed race which probably was more French than Indian, at least 
as to custom, disposition, and general appearance. There was really no 
civil government. All differences, if there were any, were settled by the 
priest in charge. The government of New France exercised no authority 
in Kaskaskia. 

The Kaskaskia tribe of Indians was never large and the presence of 
priests, traders, and travelers gave the village quite an air of civiliza- 
tion. The activities were simple hunting, fishing, and trafficking. The 
two rivers and their tributaries thereto furnished an abundance of op- 
portunity for food. Probably no commercial value attached to the occu- 
pation of fishing ; each person providing his own table with this sort of 
food. Hunting and trapping became a profitable business, and regular 
markets were opened where furs were sold for cash or exchanged for 
European goods which now began to find their way into the Illinois 
country. As soon as the French established themselves at the mouth 
of the Mississippi, the intercourse with the mother country was largely 
by way of the south and through these new settlements, rather than 
through Canada. However, it must be remembered that coincident with 
the first decade of the life of the Kaskaskia colony, there was raging in 
western Europe a war of considerable import the war of the ' ' Spanish 
Succession," or more popularly "Queen Anne's war." 

This war in no way directly affected our French settlements on the 
Mississippi, but it prevented France^from giving attention to her new 
settlements and they drifted along for ten or more years. It is true that 



colonists were sent to the Mississippi valley from France by the ship- 
load, as many as 2,500 being sent between the settling of Biloxi and the 
close of Anne's war in 1713. But the character of the immigrants and 
the lack of paternal oversight may be seen in the fact that out of the 
2,500 colonists only 400 whites and twenty negroes were to be found in 
1813. The settlers about Kaskaskia were evidently more thrifty, and 
were free from some of the forces which operated to decimate the num- 
bers at Biloxi and nearby settlements. The situation at Kaskaskia was 
evidently more healthful than that at Biloxi; the character of the set- 
tlers more hardy, and the Kaskaskia settlers more industrious, having 
begun early the cultivation of the soil. There are no means of determin- 
ing the white population in Kaskaskia prior to the end of Queen Anne's 
war; but it may be conjectured that the number of whites was very 


In the grant to Crozat in 1712, it was declared "and further, that 
all lands which we possess from the Illinois, be united, so far as occasion 


requires, to the General Government of New France and become a part 
thereof." There certainly was no civil government in the Illinois coun- 
try during the five years from 1712 to 1717. In 1718 Boisbriant landed 
at Mobile with a commission making Bienville governor-general over the 
Louisiana territory and making himself, Boisbriant, commandant of the 
Illinois country. The growth of the territory was rapid from this time 
forward, and there was need of better methods of civil administration. 
In 1721 the whole of the Mississippi valley was divided into nine civil 
jurisdictions, as follows: New Orleans, Biloxi, Mobile, Alabama, 
Natchez, Yazoo, Natchitoches, Arkansas, and Illinois. "There shall be 
at the headquarters in each district a commandant and a judge, from 
whose decisions appeals may be had to the superior council established 
at New Biloxi." Breese's History of Illinois gives a copy of an appeal 
of the inhabitants of Kaskaskia to the Provincial commandant and judge 
relative to the grants of lands to individuals and to the inhabitants as a 
whole. It has four distinct sections. The heading is as follows: 



This petition was duly considered and a notation made upon each 
section, signed by De Lielte, who was commandant, and by Chaffin, who 
was judge, and the whole forwarded to the Superior Council for final, 
action. It bears date 1727. 

The religious life of Kaskaskia, Cahokia, and other French villages 
was quite free from outside influence. By the third article of the ordi- 
nance issued by Louis XV in 1724, all religious beliefs other than the 
Catholic faith were forbidden. The article reads as follows : ' ' We pro- 
hibit any other religious rites than those of the Apostolic Roman Catho- 
lic church; requiring that those who violate this shall be punished as 
rebels, disobedient to our commands." This ordinance also made it an 
offense to set over any slaves any overseers who should in any way pre- 
vent the slaves from professing the Roman Catholic religion. 

By an earlier ordinance, issued in 1722, by the council for the com- 
pany, and with the consent of the bishop of Quebec, the province of 
Louisiana was divided into three spiritual jurisdictions. The first 
comprised the banks of the Mississippi from the gulf to the mouth of 
the Ohio, and including the region to the west. The Capuchins were to 
officiate in the churches, and their superior was to reside in New Or- 
leans. The second spiritual district comprised all the territory north of 
the Ohio, and was assigned to the charge of the Jesuits whose superior 
should reside in the Illinois, presumably at Kaskaskia. The third dis- 
trict lay south of the Ohio and east of the Mississippi river and was as- 
signed to the Carmelites, the residence of the superior being at Mobile. 
Each of the three superiors was to be a grand vicar of the bishop of 
Quebec. The Carmelites remained in charge of their territory south of 
the Ohio only till the following fall, December, 1722, when they turned 
over their work to the Capuchins and returned to France. 

As evidence of the activity of the Jesuits in the territory which was 
assigned them, we are told they had already, in 1721, established a 
monastery in Kaskaskia. It is stated in Monette's Mississippi Valley, 
that a college was also established there about the year 1721. Charle- 
voix, quoted by Davidson and Stuve, says: "I passed the night with 
the missionaries (at Cahokia), who are two ecclesiastics from the sem- 
inary at Quebec, formerly my disciples, but they must now be my mas- 
ters. . . Yesterday I arrived at Kaskaskia about nine o'clock. The 
Jesuits have a very flourishing mission, which has lately been divided 
into two." All descriptions which have come down to us of the condi- 
tions in the Illinois country in the first part of the eighteenth century 
represent the church as most aggressive and prosperous. Civil govern- 
ment certainly must have passed into "innocuous desuetude" by 1732. 
In 1720 a financial panic struck France and John Law was forced to 
flee from the country. The Company of the Indies kept up a pretense 
of carrying on its business, but in 1732 upon petition by the company, 
the king issued a proclamation declaring the company dissolved and 
Louisiana to be free to all subjects of the king. There were at this time, 
1732 about 7,000 whites and 2,000 negro slaves within the limits of the 
Louisiana territory. The rules of the Western Company had been so 
exacting that many of the activities of the people had been repressed. 
Every one seems to have been held in a sort of vassalage to the company. 
Now the territory was to come directly under the crown. 



By the proclamation of the king of France in 1732, Louisiana be- 
came a royal province, and was attached temporarily to New France 
for purposes of government. For thirty-two years France had been 
pouring men and money into the Mississippi valley; Crozat had spent 
a fortune. The Western Company had sent thousands of people into 
the territory and had spent money lavishly for supplies, soldiers, forts, 
transportation, and explorations. The government took up the work 
with some degree of spirit and began by separating the Louisiana 
province from New France, in governmental matters. The officers for 
Louisiana were a governor, an intendant, and a royal council. The 
governor was to appoint the commandant for the Illinois. At the 
time of this change in the government from that of the Western Com- 
pany to that of royal oversight, St. Ange de Belle Rive was command- 
ant in the Illinois. He was followed by Pierre D'Artaguette, who 
seems to have assumed command in 1834, probably in the very early 
part of that year. 

The settlements at the mouth of the Mississippi river and those 
in the Illinois country were separated from each other by hundreds 
of miles of territory whose only occupants were Indians. Kaskaskia 
was the farthest south of any of the settlements in Illinois, and Natchez 
was the farthest north of any of the settlements about the mouth of 
the Mississippi. From Natchez south down the river, settlements were 
scattering. The Natchez and the Chickasaw Indians occupied nearly 
all the territory adjacent to the Mississippi river, on the east, and 
south of the Ohio river. These Indians had been more or less trouble- 
some to the commerce passing up and down the river. In 1729 a con- 
spiracy was hatched by these Indians, and the Natchez fell upon the 
settlers at the town of Natchez (Fort Rosalie) and massacred the en- 
tire population. A vigorous campaign drove this tribe west of the 
Mississippi, where they were captured and sold as slaves in the West 

After this summary disposal of the Natchez Indians, the Chicka- 
saws became troublesome. The governor at New Orleans, felt it his 
duty to discipline them. He called on D'Artaguette, commandant at 
Kaskaskia, and upon Francois Morgan de Vincenne, commandant at 
the Post Vincennes, for soldiers. Each furnished soldiers and some 



Indians, and the combined force moved southward from the mouth of 
the Ohio. The force from the south under Bienville, and the one from 
the north under D 'Artaguette, were not timed so as to arrive at the 
Indian stronghold at the same time. D' Artaguette reached the scene 
of conflict first and in an unsuccessful assault many of his men were 
killed, and he and Vincenne and Father Senat fell into the hands of 
the Chickasaws, who, despairing of a large ransom from Bienville, 
took their distinguished prisoners out into an open field and there 
tortured them to death by a slow fire. Thus Illinois lost a brilliant 
leader and a score or more of valuable citizens. Not only so, but it 
took four years more of warfare to subdue the warlike Chickasaws. 
After 1739 there was comparative freedom in the navigation of the 
Mississippi river. The French and Indians north of the Ohio were on 
very good terms and the French settlements were growing rapidly. 
New settlements sprang up here and there on the Illinois and on the 
Wabash. Many of these settlements were not permanent, being en- 
gaged in the fur trade. 

In 1744 war broke out between France and England and there was 
more or less friction between the French colonists in Canada and the 
English settlers in New York, and the New England colonists. This 
is called in this country, King George's war. The quiet on-going of 
affairs in the Louisiana territory was not disturbed by this conflict. 
The French and Indians west of the Alleghanies were on very good 
terms following the Natchez and Chickasaw war. Agriculture flour- 
ished, and commerce on the Mississippi was free from any restraints. 
Capital began to seek investments and population rapidly increased. 
"Illinois sent regular cargoes of flour, bacon, pork, hides, leather, 
tallow, bear's oil, and lumber" to the markets of the world. The 
method of transportation was in keel boats and barges. The keel boats 
and barges returned up the river from New Orleans with consign- 
ments of rice, tobacco, indigo, sugar, cotton fabrics, and all kinds of 
European goods. The entire Louisiana country including the Illinois 
and the Wabash settlements was quite self-sustaining. 

But while these settlements were free from the war, called King 
George's war, there were other drawbacks. In the fall of 1745, severe 
storms and inundations swept over the plantations of the lower Louis- 
iana, destroying a large proportion of the crops. The rice crop was 
almost a total loss. Rice was used largely as a substitute for bread by 
the people of the lower Louisiana, and its loss would be greatly felt 
unless some other article could be substituted. The loss to the people 
about New Orleans was gain to the Illinois people for it made a mar- 
ket for their surplus wheat and flour. Monette, in Vol I, page 316, 
says as many as four thousand sacks of flour of 100 pounds each were 
shipped to New Orleans in the years 1745 and 1746. Reynolds says 
in his Pioneer History that the flour was sacked in deerskins. 

From the coming of the Company of the West in 1718, to the French 
and Indian war, there was great growth in the Illinois country. It 
should be pointed out that what people then called "the Illinois" or 
the "Illinois Country," was principally the territory which came to 
be known as the American Bottoms. This is a great body of alluvial 
land stretching from the present city of Alton to the city of Chester, 
lying between the Mississippi river and the "bluffs" on the east. The 
distance from Alton to Chester is about seventy-five miles on a straight 


line, but probably one hundred and twenty-five miles by the river. 
The width of this alluvial plain is about six to eight miles. These bot- 
toms are a rich alluvial deposit and are fairly well drained. In some 
places, however, there are lakes and bayous which render the land 
useless. Many of the lakes have been drained, and the land thus re- 
deemed is very valuable. It was in these rich alluvial bottoms that all 
the early French villages were located. The French had a system of 
granting their public lands very different from our system of rectangu- 
lar surveys. We survey our lands and throw them into townships, 
sections and quarter sections, a rectangular system. Our lands are 
mapped and it is easy to locate sections or smaller units than the 

The French system was virtually a system of strips abutting on 
the river and reaching back over the alluvial grounds to the "bluffs," 
and even beyond. If one will examine the county maps of St. Clair, 
Monroe, and Randolph, he will find these grants laid down the grants 
abutting on the river and extending in narrow strips back to the bluffs. 
In addition to these grants of the strips to individuals, there were 
grants made to each village known as the "Commons" or the "Com- 
mon Lands." This was a grant made to the community as a whole, 
and was used as common pasture lands and, when timbered, was used 
as the source of fuel. Such grants were made to Cahokia, Prairie du 
Pont, Prairie du Rocher, Kaskaskia and probably to New Chartres. 
These "Commons" or "Common Lands" must not be confused with 
"Common Fields." The commons were were not cultivated, while the 
"Common Fields" were used for cultivation. The common field was 
laid off in strips, each of which, was assigned to a particular person 
for cultivation for the season; next season it was assigned to a differ- 
ent person. The whole of the common field was under one fence, but 
there were no partition fences. Wheat and corn were raised in large 
quantities, and there were mills for the grinding of these grains. 
Renault is said to have put up a water mill and a chapel in his village 
of St. Phillipe. The mill was for grinding and sawing. There were 
other water mills along the bluffs where corn and wheat were ground. 
Horse mills also were common. 

Horses and cattle were introduced very early. Reynolds says the 
cattle came from Canada, while the horses were of the Arabian strain 
and were brought to the southwest by the Spaniards. It is not to be 
understood that the cultivation of the soil was of a very high order. 
Utensils were crude. The plows were wooden and were usually drawn 
by oxen. The oxen were fastened together by the horns by means of a 
flat piece of wood, and not yoked as was customary with the English 
settlers. The wagons were small two-wheel carts made by the farmers 
themselves, usually with little or no iron, and were pulled or pushed 
by hand, seldom by horses or oxen. 

The crops were cultivated by slave labor and chiefly by hand. The 
French people were much given to the cultivation of small fruits and 
flowers. Cherry, apple, peach, and plum trees grew in each yard. 
Large beds of flowers were cultivated, and wild flowers were gathered 
in abundance. As late as 1825 when La Fayette visited Kaskaskia the 
French inhabitants searched the woods for wild flowers, and the ban- 
quet hall was litterly filled with them. The houses were mainly built 
after one pattern. The "ground plan" was marked off by trenches in 


which upright posts were set side by side in palisade style. The tops 
were sawed off of uniform height. On top of these posts the roof was 
placed constructed of simple frame work thatched with wild grasses, 
or in earlier years with the skins of animals, and in later years covered 
with boards. The spaces were filled in with mud and grasses, and later 
with mortar made from lime burned in the bluffs nearby. In later years 
these upright posts were set on timbers instead of being set in the ground, 
and there is one old house standing in old Brownville which was built 
that way. It was built as late as 1830 or 1840. 

The religious life of this people was a simple faith in the priest 
and in his teachings. As has been said before there were no other 
faiths than that of the Roman Catholic church. There were no 
schools in the sense in which we know schools today. The instruc- 
tion given was largely through the work of the priests. It is probable 
that many of those who were sufficiently educated to carry on busi- 
ness transactions were immigrants from Canada or from France di- 
rect. However, the college which is said to have flourished from 
1721 to 1754 may have furnished a means for an education which 
met the demands of those days. It is certain that the great mass of 
people were ignorant though kind and considerate. 

The Illinois country, as has been shown, included Vincennes and 
other settlements on the Wabash. Vincennes is said to have been 
founded as early as 1702 by Francois Morgan de Vincenne. It was 
the fourth in the line of forts reaching from the lakes to the Mississippi 
by way of the Wabash. The first of these forts was constructed at 
Detroit in 1701. The second at the junction of the St. Joseph with 
the Miami where the city of Fort Wayne is today. A third fort was 
located about seven miles below the present city of La Fayette and 
was called Ontanon. The fourth was located where the present city 
of Vincennes is. This fort was known as Fort Sackville and the town 
as Post Vincent. A fifth was built on the Ohio a few miles below 
the mouth of the Tennessee and the fort came to be called Fort Mas- 
sac. This last fort was built about 1711 or 1712. However, it is 
claimed that the building of the fort was as early as 1702. There was 
probably a mission post there as early as 1702 planted by Father 
Mermet, and was known as the Assumption. By glancing at the 
map one may see what an excellent water route was accessible from 
the lakes to the Mississippi by way of the Wabash. Little is known 
of Post Vincennes and of Fort Massac prior to the French and In- 
dian war. They were doubtless visited by the French as they passed 
between the lakes and the gulf via the Wabash. 


King George's war which had its origin in European political 
complications closed in 1748. The treaty which closed the war pro- 
vided for the return of Louisburg to the French, and all other pos- 
sessions of England and France in America to remain as they were 
prior to the war. It could easily be seen that the next struggle be- 
tween the French and the English would be for the permanent con- 
trol of the Ohio valley and the adjacent territory east of the 
Mississippi river. The English had never relaxed in their determina- 
tion to possess the Ohio valley. In 1748 a treaty known as the Treaty 


of Lancaster was made at Lancaster, Pennsylvania, between English 
commissioners and three Indian chiefs representing twelve towns in 
the vicinity of the Wabash. The purpose of the treaty was to at- 
tach the Indians north of the Ohio to the English cause. The Ohio 
Land Company was formed in 1748. It contained residents of Eng- 
land and Virginia. It received from King George II a grant of a 
half million acres of land on and about the Ohio river. They were 
given the exclusive right of trading with the Indians in that region. 

In 1749 the governor general of Canada sent Louis Celeron, a 
knight of the Military Order of St. Louis, to plant lead plates along 
the valley of the Ohio which might eventually prove French priority 
of occupation of this territory. Several of the plates were afterward 
unearthed. In 1750 Celeron wrote a letter to the governor of Penn- 
sylvania warning him of the danger to his people who might tres- 
pass upon the French possessions along the Ohio. In 1752 agents of 
the Ohio Company established a trading post within a few miles 
of the present site of Piqua, Ohio. In the same year the French 
and Indian allies destroyed this post, killing fourteen Twightwees 
Indians, who were under a treaty with the English. Logstown, about 
18 miles below the forks of the Ohio, was settled in 1748 by the Eng- 
lish and in 1752 a treaty was made there in which the Indians ceded 
certain rights and privileges to the English. 

The French began in 1753 to build a line of forts from the lakes 
to the Mississippi by way of the Ohio and its tributaries from the 
north. The first fort was located at Presque Isle (now Erie, Penn- 
sylvania) ; the second one was Fort Le Boeuf on French Creek, a 
branch of the Alleghany. The third was called Venango at the 
mouth of the French Creek. From here they pushed south and found 
some Englishmen building a fort at the junction of the Alleghany 
and Monongahela. The French drove the Englishmen from the place 
and finished the fort and named it Fort Du Quesne. This was the 
fourth fortification in the line of forts reaching from the lakes to the 
Mississippi river. The French and Indian war was now fairly be- 
gun and we shall return to the Illinois to see what part this region 
was to play in this final contest for supremacy between the two great 
old world powers. 

We have called attention to the activity of the French in build- 
ing forts on the upper Ohio to secure that region from the English. 
The same activity marked their preparations in the west for th n , im- 
pending struggle. Fort Chartres had been originally of wood. There 
never were many soldiers stationed there at any time only a few 
score soldiers and officers, but following King George's war it was de- 
cided to rebuilt Fort Chartres on a large scale. Many descriptions 
have been written of this charming historic spot, and many noted trav- 
elers have visited its ruins but the author takes great pleasure in pre- 
senting a sketch written by the Hon. H. C. Voris, publisher of The 
Waterloo Republican. Mr. Voris has lived in the vicinity of the old fort 
for many' years and possesses a familiarity with its history and its tra- 
dition which peculiarly fits him to write its history. I take pleasure 
therefore in presenting in section three of this chapter the sketch 
which Editor Voris has so kindly prepared. 



Fort Chartres is by far the most interesting and most important 
historic point in Illinois, perhaps in the Mississippi valley. It is in a 
class by itself. In its time it was the strongest fort in America. It 
was the capital of two mighty powers, the center of western civiliza- 
tion, the Mecca of the West. Passing from control of the Indians, Illi- 
nois was claimed by Spain, occupied by France, conquered by Eng- 
land, then passed to the Americans under George Rogers Clark with 
the capture of Kaskaskia. The French, English, and American flags 
successively floated at this ancient citadel. 

While all other works of the pioneers have suffered decay, and there 
remains nothing but the sites on which they stood, the ruins of Fort' 
Chartres are still well defined, and the old powder magazine is still in- 
tact, apparently preserved by the very reverence which the surround- 
ings and traditions of the place seem to inspire. 

Fort Chartres is situated in the northern portion of Randolph county, 
near the Mississippi, and not far from the Monroe county line. In fact 
the settlement which grew up about the fort was principally in Monroe 
county. And the food-stuffs which supplied the fort, and upon which 
the French drew in the French and Indian war, were produced in Mon- 
roe, on what is now known as the Renault grant. 

The strategic point of Fort Chartres was first recognized by the great 
La Salle. He impressed the ministers of Louis XIV of the importance 
of establishing a string of forts from Quebec down through the Missis- 
sippi valley, thus early recognizing the fact that this portion of country 
was destined to become populous and valuable. 

This territory was embraced in the Florida country and claimed by 
Spain by right of discovery. The claims of France were based upon the 
explorations of La Salle. The English then were east of the Alleghanies, 
but were gradually pushing westward. The early French explorers 
were first to discover the great resources of the valley, its rich trade in 
furs and minerals, and agricultural productions. The shrewd French 
traders early saw the clash which was inevitable from the Spanish then 
at Santa Fe, and the English on the east. 

For protection against these two future foes it was determined to 
erect a fort, and Pierre Duque Boisbriant, a cousin of Bienville, then 
governor of Louisiana, was sent with his commission as commandant 
of the Illinois. He arrived in Mobile February 9, 1718. 

In October of 1718 he arrived in the Illinois country, stopping at 
Kaskaskia. He determined upon a site sixteen miles above Kaskas- 
kia, midway between Kaskaskia and Cahokia, and the same winter 
began work upon the fort. 

Fort Chartres was completed in 1720, and the banner of France was 
flung to the breeze. This log fort protected within its walls the barracks 
and commandant's house, store-house of the India Company, and maga- 
zines. It was named in honor of Due de Chartres, son of the Regent. 

One of the first arrivals after the completion of the log fort was 
Philip Francois Renault, a banker of Paris, and director-general of the 
mines of the India Company. He brought with him about 250 miners, 
and several slaves from St. Domingo. The present colored population 
of Prairie du Rocher are descendants of the Renault slaves. Thus was 
slavery introduced into Illinois. 


The fort was scarcely finished when Boisbriant was apprised of a 
contemplated attack by the Spaniards from Mexico. This force, how- 
ever, was annihilated by the Pawnees, the chaplain of the expedition 
alone escaping. This account of the expedition was given to Father 
Charlevoix at Green Bay by two Indian chiefs. 

Father Charlevoix was traveling through the valley. With him 
was a young Canadian escort, Jean St. Ange de Belle Rive, who later be- 
came commander of the fort. 

The village which grew up about the fort became the parish of Ste. 
Anne de Fort Chartres. 

The Provincial Council of the Illinois consisted of the governor- 
general, Boisbriant ; civil officer, Marc Antoine de la Loire des Ursins, 
also principal director of the India Company ; and Michel Chassin, com- 
missary for the company. This council dispensed justice, regulated 
titles, and established the court which prevailed for forty years. They 
executed the grants upon which many titles rest to this day. 

One of their largest grants was made in 1723 to Philip Renault, con- 
sisting of a piece of land in Monroe county, one league along the river 
and two leagues inland. This tract lies just north of the fort. It was 
intended by Renault to furnish provisions for his men at the mines. 
(This grant was never conveyed by Renault, and for many years was 
marked upon the map as the property of Philip Renault heirs.) From 
Indian tradition much mineral wealth was believed to be in what is now 
Monroe county, and local tradition substantiates such views as to lead. 
Silver creek derives its name from reported silver mines along its banks. 
Many efforts have been made to locate the lost lead mine in the bluffs of 
Monroe, but all have proved futile. Traces of gold have been found in 
Prairie du Long precinct, and tradition weaves an interesting story, the 
same traditions, perhaps, that lured Renault. 

In 1728 the troops at Fort Chartres were called upon to repel the 
Foxes, a tribe of Indians who had become very troublesome. 

In 1729 Governor St. Ange purchased a tract of land near the fort 
from an Indian named Chicago. 

In 1734 the Chickasaws became offensive, and Bienville resolved to 
crush them. De Coulanges was sent to Fort Chartres with a supply of 
ammunition. But he disobeyed orders and transported merchandise, 
leaving the powder at the Arkansas. For this he was imprisoned six 
months at the fort. In February, D'Artaguiette, who had succeeded 
St. Ange, sailed down the river with his troops, together with all the 
Kaskaskia Indians, and a flock of Indian warriors as far away as De- 
troit, led by Chief Chicago. The troops reached the Chickasaw vil- 
lages, but the soldiers from New Orleans failed to arrive, and the 
Frenchmen were defeated by the Chickasaws. D'Artaguiette, young St. 
Ange, Vincenne and many others were burned at the stake. 

After the death of D'Artaguiette, La Buissoniere succeeded him as 
commandant of Illinois. These were the brightest days of Fort Chartres. 
He kept peace with the Indians, developed agriculture, and extended 
trade. He sent two convoys each year to New Orleans, loaded with the 
produce of the vicinity. The smaller villages of Prairie du Rocher and 
St. Phillipe sprang up in the vicinity. Boisbriant conveyed much of his 
land ,to his nephew Langlois, and he in turn to others. Descendants of 
the elder Langlois still reside at Prairie du Rocher. St. Phillipe was es- 
tablished upon the Renault grant by Philip Renault, and became a thriv- 


ing village. Renault made his last conveyance of a lot at St. Phillipe in 
1740, and returned to Paris. 

Chevalier de Bertel became major-commandant in 1743, succeeding 
La Buissoniere. Affairs at the fort were becoming gloomy. France and 
England were at war. The Indians had been won over to the English, 
and had greed to destroy the fort at the falling of the leaves. De Bertel 
appealed to the governor of Canada, Marquis de Galissoniere, who be- 
came impressed with the necessity of holding the fort. His memorial 
to the French government was so strong that the king sacrificed much 
of his private fortune for its support. The treaty of Aix la Chapelle 
saved the fort, and gave them time to recuperate. 

Recognizing the importance of the post, the French government in 
1750 sent Chevalier Makarty, a major of engineers, and a few companies 
of troops to rebuild the citadel of Illinois. Other detachments followed, 
until nearly a full regiment was quartered there. Benoist St. Clair had 
succeeded Bertel as commandant. 

The old fort had been hastily constructed of wood. The new fort was 
to be of stone. It was planned and constructed by Lieutenant Jean B. 
Saussier, a French engineer, whose descendants lived in Cahokia many 
years, one of whom, Dr. John Snyder, now lives in Virginia, Cass county, 
Illinois. When completed it was the finest and most costly fort in Amer- 
ica. The cost of its construction was about $1,500,000, and it seriously 
embarrassed the French exchequer. Makarty evidently drew his inspi- 
ration from the temple of King Solomon. The stones were hewn, 
squared, and numbered in the quarries in the bluff just opposite, about 
four miles distant, and conveyed across the lake to the fort in boats. 
The massive stone walls enclosed about four acres. They were 18 feet 
high and about two feet thick. The gateway was arched, and 15 feet 
high ; a cut-stone platform was above the gate with a stair of nineteen 
steps and balustrade leading to it; there were four bastions, each with 
forty-eight loopholes, eight embrasures, and a sentry box, all in cut 
stone. Within the walls stood the store house, 90 feet long, 30 wide, two 
stories high ; the guard house with two rooms above for chapel and mis- 
sionary quarters; the government house, 84x32, with iron gates and a 
stone porch ; a coach house, pigeon house, and large well walled up with 
the finest of dressed rock; the intendant's house; two rows of barracks, 
each 128 feet long ; the magazine, which is still standing and well pre- 
served 35x38 and 13 feet high ; bake ovens ; four prison cells of cut 
stone ; one large relief gate on the north. Such was the pride of the 
French empire, and the capital of New France. 

The fort was scarcely completed when the French and Indian war 
broke out. In May of 1754 George Washington and his Virginia rifle- 
men surprised the French at Great Meadows, where Jumonville, the 
French commander, was killed. A brother of the slain French comman- 
der, who was stationed at Fort Chartres, secured leave from Makarty 
to avenge his death. Taking his company with him they proceeded to 
Fort Duquesne, and there gathering up some friendly Indians they at- 
tacked Washington at Fort Necessity, which was surrendered on July 4. 
This was the real beginning of the old French war. Flushed with victory, 
the little detachment returned to Fort Chartres, and celebrated the tri- 
umph of Illinois over Virginia. 

In the French and Indian war the demand upon Makarty at Fort 
Chartres for men and provisions became incessant. In fact, Fort Char- 


tres became the principal base of supplies in the west. In 1755, Captain 
Aubry was sent to reenforce Port Duquesne with 400 men. The fort 
held out for some time, but later Colonel Washington compelled its aban- 

The power of the French began to wane. They maintained 
the struggle gallantly, however, and made one more desperate effort 
to raise the siege of Port Niagara. They failed. The flower of Fort 
Chartres went down at Niagara. The surrender of Canada soon fol- 
lowed, but Port Chartres still held out for the French king. (After 
the rebuilding of the fort the place became known as New Chartres.) 
They hoped that they would still be considered with Louisiana, and 
remain in French territory. Their disappointment was bitter when 
they learned that on February 10, 1763, Louis XV had ratified the 
treaty transferring them to Great Britain. 

While the French at Fort Chartres were waiting for a British 
force to come to take possession, Pierre Laclede arrived from New 
Orleans to settle at the Illinois, bringing with him a company repre- 
senting merchants engaged in the fur trade. Learning of the treaty 
of cession he decided to establish his post on the west side of the Mis- 
sissippi, which he still believed to be French soil. He selected a fine 
bluff sixty miles north of Fort Chartres for the site of his post, and 
returned for the winter. In the spring he began his colony, and was 
enthusiastic over its prospects. Many of the French families followed 
him, wishing to remain under the French flag. Their disappointment 
was still more bitter when they learned that all the French possessions 
west of the Mississippi had been ceded to Spain. This is now St. Louis. 

The elder St. Ange, who had been at Vincennes, returned to take 
part in the last act. Though the territory had been transferred to 
King George, the white flag of the Bourbons continued to fly at Fort 
Chartres, the last place in America. The Indian chief Pontiac, was 
another power not taken into confidence at the treaty. Pontiac loved 
the French, but detested the English. When the English companies 
under Loftus, Pitman, and Morris, respectively came to take possession, 
each was balked by the wily red man. Chief Pontiac gathered an 
army of red men and proceeded to Fort Chartres where he met St. 
Ange, and boldly proposed to assist him in repelling the English. St. 
Ange plainly told him that all was over, and advised him to make 
peace with the English. Fort Chartres was finally surrendered to 
Captain Stirling on October 10, 1765. The red cross of St. George 
replaced the Lilies of France. St. Ange and his men took a boat for 
St. Louis, and there enrolled in the garrison under the Spanish, which 
St. Ange was appointed to command. 

The first court of law was established at Fort Chartres in December, 
1768, Fort Chartres becoming the capital of the British province west 
of the Alleghanies. Colonel Wilkins had assumed command under a 
proclamation from General Gage, and with seven judges sat at Fort 
Chartres to administer the law of England. After the surrender by 
the French the church records were removed to Kaskaskia. The rec- 
ords of the old French court were also removed there. A constant 
warfare had been kept up by the Indians, until Pontiac was killed near 
Cahokia by an Illinois Indian. Pontiac 's warriors pursued the Illinois 
tribe to the walls of Fort Chartres, where many of them were slain, 
the British refusing to assist them. St. Ange recovered the body of 


Pontiac, and it was buried on the spot now occupied by the Southern 
Hotel in St. Louis, a memorial plate marking the place. 

In 1772 high water swept away one of the bastions, and a part of 
the western wall of Fort Chartres. The British took refuge at Kaskas- 
kia, and the fort was never occupied again. Congress, in 1778, re- 
served to the government a tract one mile square, of which the fort 
was the center. But this reservation was opened to entry in 1849, no 
provision being made for the fort. Governor Reynolds visited the 
place in 1802. He says: "It is an object of antiquarian curiosity. 
The trees, undergrowth and brush are mixed and interwoven with the 
old walls. It presented the most striking contrast between a savage 
wilderness, filled with wild beasts and reptiles, and the remains of one 
of the largest and strongest fortifications on the continent. Large 
trees were growing in the houses which once contained the elegant and 
accomplished French officers and soldiers." 

Judge Brackenridge of the United States District of Louisiana, in 
1811, says: "Fort Chartres is a noble ruin, and is visited by strangers 
as a great curiosity. The outward wall, barracks and magazine are 
still standing. There are a number of cannon lying half buried in the 
earth, with their trunnions broken off." 

Hall, in his Romance of the West in 1829, says: "It was with 
difficulty that we found the ruins, which are covered with a vigorous 
growth of forest trees. . . . The buildings were all razed to the 
ground, but the lines of the foundations could be easily traced. A 
large vaulted powder magazine remained in good preservation. And it 
was curious to see in the gloom of a wild forest these remnants of the 
architecture of a past age." 

It is a pleasant drive from Waterloo to the ruins. The twenty miles 
take you along one of the most productive ridges of the valley for part 
of the way, after which a turn is made into the bluffs and the "big 
spring" is passed which was the stopping place for the early travelers 
on their way from Kaskaskia and Fort Chartres to Cahokia. From a 
distance, after getting into the bottom, the bluffs present as pretty a 
picture as do the famed palisades of the Hudson, or the beautiful val- 
ley of the Ohio. And, suddenly, you descend a little knoll, and find 
yourself at once in Prairie du Rocher. Here are the descendants of 
the French of Fort Chartres, who chose to stay rather than to follow 
St. Ange to St. Louis. Here is the typical French village, where all is 
sunshine and flowers, where love and piety prevail, where the very 
atmosphere seems inspired with French accents of the past. Three 
chalices and a monstrance, and a tabernacle of inlaid wood, all from 
the church of Ste. Anne of Fort Chartres, are preserved in the church 
of St. Joseph in Prairie du Rocher. Three miles due west lie the ruins 
of the old fort. It was the writer's pleasure to visit this spot with 
Father Krewet in 1886, when he was in charge of the parish. 

All roads formerly lead to Fort Chartres. Now it takes diligent 
inquiry to find the place. It lies about a quarter of a mile from the 
public highway, completely obscured by the growth of underbrush 
which surrounds it. Upon arriving at the spot the old magazine stands 
out proudly and reverently, connecting the two centuries past with the 
present. The very ground seems hallowed. The songs of the birds 
seem sacred. And the lover of history gazes in awe and silence upon 
the ruins of the past, which almost two centuries ago, teemed with life. 


This was the Paris of America, where the gallant French officers in 
gold and glitter danced with ladies attired in the latest fashions of 

The old gateway of carved stone may yet be traced. One of the 
corner bastions is still fairly well defined. One angle of the wall still 
remains, and for many years served as a foundation for a barn built 
within these sacred precincts. The well is still there, walled with its 
cut stone, and until recently contained good, pure water, in decided 
contrast to the ordinary well near the river. 

The old walls have been destroyed by the ruthless hands of ignor- 
ance, and the lapse of time. The dressed stones have been hauled away 
and now form the foundations of many houses and barns between the 
old fort and Kaskaskia. 

Fate has been kind to the magazine. Its walls built of carefully 


dressed and fitted stones, and its arched roof, have defied the elements, 
and so far have escaped the unsparing hand of barbarous force. 

The cannon which bristled proudly in the halcyon days have long 
since disappeared, having been removed to Fort Russell (now Edwards- 
ville), which was the principal base of operations in the west in the 
War of 1812, and to Fort Jefferson, some miles below Cairo, in Ken- 

The villages of Ste. Anne and St. Phillipe have also disappeared. 
St. Phillipe is now a farm, but to this day a part of the road at the bluffs 
and a portion of the field is known as King's Highway, and marks the 
road which Renault traveled in his zenith. 

The old magazine, now covered with moss and vines, is indeed an 
object picturesque and venerable. It is by far the most interesting 
ruin of Colonial days. At the session of the legislature in 1911, a bill 
was introduced, appropriating a sum of money with which to purchase 
the site and convert it into a state park. It was a most worthy cause. 
And it is hoped that some action will yet be taken to preserve the old 
magazine and preserve the site before it is too late. 



Survey by N. Hansen and L. C. Beck, in 1820. 
Scale 125 ft. to inch. 
A A A Exterior wall, 1,447 feet. 
B Gate. 
C Small gate. 

D D Two houses occupied by commandant and commissary, each 
96x30 feet. 
E Well. 
F Magazine. 



GG GG Barracks, 135x36 feet. 

H H Store house and guard house, 90x24 feet. 

I Small magazine. 

K Furnace. 

L L L Ravine, filled with water in spring. 

Area of fort about four square acres. 


The treaty which closed the French and Indian war was signed at 
Paris February 10, 1763. It was known when Quebec fell that the ter- 
ritory west of the Alleghanies would eventually come into possession of 
the English. It was a great trial for the Indians around the great lakes 
and in the Mississippi valley to transfer their allegiance from the king 


of France to the king of England. The Indians claimed that they were 
independent nations and that they had not had a voice in the treaty 
and they therefore felt that their interests had been neglected by the 
treaty-making powers. There were specific provisions for the transfer 
of the French settlers from the control of France to the oversight of 
England, but nothing was said affecting the interests and oversight and 
control of the Indians. When England began the work of taking pos- 
session of this western territory, the Indians under the leadership 
of Pontiac began a series of counter movements which delayed the 
coming of the British. The flag of Great Britain was promptly raised 
over Fort Pitt, Niagara, Detroit, Green Bay, St. Joseph, Mackinaw 
and other points. There were only three things for the Indians to 
do leave the territory for lands west of the Mississippi river, enter 
into some form of treaty relations with Great Britain and remain on 
their old lands, or oppose by force of arms the spread of English con- 
trol in the west. "Their nature, courage, and love of independence, 
sustained by the justness of their cause, prompted them to adopt the 
last alternative." 

The King of England in order to allay as far as possible the feel- 
ings of the Indians, issued a proclamation in 1763 in which he set 
apart the "Indian Country," which included all the territory west 
of the Alleghanies, east of the Mississippi, north of the Floridas, and 
south of the great lakes. He ordered that no governors of the Eng- 
lish colonies on the Atlantic seaboard should make any grants of lands 
west of the Alleghanies. He also forbade any transfers or grants of 
lands by the Indians themselves. Notwithstanding this proclamation 
the surveyors were busy locating tracts which had been previously 
granted, and so far as the Indians were concerned or could see there 
was little attention paid to the king's proclamation. 

All that was needed for an Indian uprising was to find some one 
who could crystallize the resentment and distrust of the Indians. Such 
a person was found in the great Pontiac a chief of the Ottawas. He is 
said to have had French blood in his veins and to have taken a pledge 
of undying hatred toward the British. He had been prominent in the 
Indian wars since 1744. He was a man of talent, courage, and integrity. 
He could not be pacified after the fall of Quebec, and saw more clearly 
than any one else the doom of the Red Man's reign in the great north- 
west. He acted without delay and by the middle of the summer of 1763 
had a well organized opposition to the westward movement of British 
military forces. A dozen English posts and forts were captured by the 
Indians and their garrisons put to the sword or the tomahawk, and their 
houses to the flames. Some of the stronger forts withstood sieges that 
have become historic. 

It is not within the scope of this work to go greatly into the detail 
of this matter, but we desire merely to get a background for other his- 
toric events that do fall within our province. 

The first effort of the British forces to reach Fort Chartres with a 
garrison was an expedition in command of Major Loftus. He was turned 
back by an attack on the Mississippi river, below the mouth of the Ohio. 
The second effort was by Capt. Morris sent from Detroit. Pontiac met 
him and after an interview, Capt. Morris returned. The third expedi- 
tion was headed by Lieut. Frazer who came from Fort Pitt. He reached 
Kaskaskia, but was there met by Pontiac and put in a boat and sent to 


New Orleans. The fourth effort was by George Crogan who with a small 
detachment was intercepted at Shawneetown and after many trying situ- 
ations was enabled to come to an understanding with Pontiac relative to 
the occupation of the Mississippi valley by the British troops. The fifth 
and final expedition was sent from Fort Pitt in the autumn of 1765. It 
was commanded by Capt. Stirling and consisted of 120 Highlanders 
from the Forty-second regiment. They reached Fort Chartres in due 
time, and when the Lilies of France had been lowered by the temporary 
commandant, St. Ange De Belle Rive, the cross of St. George was raised 
over the ramparts of old Fort Chartres, and the Illinois Indians passed 
under the dominion of the British government. The death of Pontiac 
has been mentioned and we need not repeat it here. 


At the time of the coming of Capt. Stirling in 1765, Gen. Thomas 
Gage was in command of his majesty's forces in North America. He 
issued a proclamation which Capt. Stirling made known when he reached 
the Illinois Country which was as follows : 


Whereas, by the peace concluded at Paris on the 10th of February, 1763, the 
country of the Illinois has been ceded to his Brittanic majesty, and the taking 
possession of the said country of Illinois by the troops of his majesty, though 
long delayed, has been determined upon, we have found it good. to make known 
to the inhabitants 

That his majesty grants to the inhabitants of the Illinois the liberty of the 
Catholic religion, as it has already been granted to his subjects In Canada; he 
has consequently given the most precise and effective orders, to the end that his 
new Roman Catholic subjects of the Illinois may exercise the worship of their 
religion, according to the rites of the Roman church, in the same manner as in 

That his majesty, moreover, agrees that the French inhabitants, or others, 
who have been subjects of the most Christian King, may retire, in full safety 
and freedom, whenever they please, even to New Orleans, or any other part of 
Louisiana although it should happen that the Spaniards take possession of it in 
the name of his Catholic majesty; and they may sell their estates, provided it 
be to subjects of his majesty, and transport their effects, as well as their persons, 
without restraint upon their emigration, under any pretense whatever, except in 
consequence of debts or of criminal process. 

That those who choose to retain their lands and become subjects of his ma- 
jesty, shall enjoy the same rights and priviliges, the same security for their per- 
sons and effects, and likely of trade, as the old subjects of the King 

That they are commanded by these presents, to take the oath of fidelity and 
obedience to his majesty, in presence of Sieur Stirling, captain of the Highland 
regiment, the bearer hereof, and furnished with our full powers for this purpose. 

That we recommend forcibly to the inhabitants, to conduct themselves like 
good and faithful subjects, avoiding by a wise and prudent demeanor all cause of 
complaint against them. 

That they act in concert with his majesty's officers, so that his troops may 
take peaceable possession of all the posts, and order be kept in the country ; by 
this means alone they will spare his majesty the necessity of recurring to force 
of arms, and will find themselves saved from the scourge of bloody war, and of 
all evils which the march of an army into their country would draw after it. 

We direct that these presents be read, published, and posted up in the usual 

Done and given at Headquarters. New York. Signed with our hand, sealed 
with our seal at arms, and countersigned by our Secretarv. this 30th of Decem- 
ber, 1764. 

By His Excellency, 


Gloom settled over the inhabitants, and everywhere there were prep- 
erations for leaving the Illinois country. It is said by Mason in his 
"Chapters on Illinois History" that with the departure of French au- 
thority from Fort Chartres the life in the village of New Chartres 
went out. In the register then in use of the church of Ste. Anne was 
this entry : ' ' The above-mentioned church having been abolished the 
rest of the paper which was in this book has been taken for the service 
of the church at Kaskaskia." It was indeed a sad occasion for the 
French inhabitants. Here they had built up a little inland empire; 
they had contributed of their treasure and blood to save it from their 
old enemy, and now they have become subjects of that same enemy. 
"A large portion of the population departed with their sovereigns 's 
.power. The old roof trees which had so long sheltered them, the gar- 
dens they had planted, the grass plots they had embellished, the fields, 
trees, and shrubbery nurtured, the fields they had cultivated, the old 
church in which they and their sires before them had been baptized and 
married, the ashes of their nearest and their dearest kindred lying 
near it, every hallowed spot, every object around which their warm 
affections entwined their strongest tendrils, all were abandoned rather 
than by remaining they should acknowledge fealty to a monarch they 
did not love, respect for laws they did not understand, and reverence 
for a church whose creed and forms and ministers had not their con- 
fidence and attachment." 

The officer in command of the post at Fort Chartres was known as 
the commandant of the Illinois territory. The following is a list of 
those British officers who served in that capacity: 

Captain Thomas Stirling 1765 

Major Robert Farmer 1765-1766 

Colonel Edward Cole 1766-1768 

Colonel John Reed 1768-1768 

Lieut. Col. John Wilkins 1768-1771 

Captain Hugh Lord 1771-1775 

Captain Matthew Johnson 1775-1776 

Chevalier de Rocheblave 1776-1778 

There is some confusion in the old histories as to the order and the 
dates of the above list of commandants, but it is believed the list is 
quite correct. 

The above named officers were primarily military commandants, but 
they exercised all the governmental authority that was in force in the 
territory or at least the earlier commandants did so. The inhabitants 
were very loud in their condemnation of the oppressions of the military 
commandants, and they frequently made complaints to those in au- 
thority but with no relief. These complaints must have eventually 
borne fruit, for upon the coming of Colonel Wilkins as commandant 
in 1768, he brought an order from his superior for the establishment 
of a civil court. 

Colonel Wilkins therefore issued his proclamation creating a civil 
administration of the laws of the country. He appointed seven judges 
who should hold court for the adjustment of civil cases. These judges 
held the first court at Fort Chartres, December the 8th, 1768. The law 
in force was the common law of England. Trial by jury was one fea- 
ture of the administration of justice. The French inhabitants had 


never been accustomed to this system and they complained long and 
loud about the jury system. It was difficult for the Frenchman to 
understand how there could be any justice meted out to those who 
sought relief in the courts, by a jury of twelve men many of whom 
could not read and write and of course had no technical knowledge 
of the English law. But the government was obstinate and gave the 
inhabitants no relief. The French inhabitants of the Illinois country 
therefore kept their contentions out of the courts and there was little 
for the courts to do. This system continued till the Revolutionary war. 

The civil administration of justice in the Illinois country remained 
in force till by act of the British government the whole of the Illinois 
country was thrown into the Province of Quebec. This was done by 
the passage of the Quebec Act in 1774. It has been affirmed that this 
act was intended to conciliate the French Canadians whose help the 
king saw he must have in the approaching struggle. The constant 
appeals of the French inhabitants of Illinois for relief from the unbear- 
able civil system may have been another reason, and a third may have 
been to dissuade the English colonists on the Atlantic coast from open- 
ing up the interior to settlement, for by the terms of the Quebec Act 
the Catholic religion was virtually established in the Illinois country. 

The passage of this Quebec Act was regarded by the English colon- 
ists in America as one of the acts of Great Britain which justified the 
thirteen colonists in revolting. In the Declaration of Independence 
we find the complaint 

For abolishing the free system of English laws in a neighboring 
province (the Illinois country), establishing therein an arbitrary gov- 
ernment, and enlarging its boundaries, so as to render it at once an 
example and fit instrument for introducing the same absolute rule into 
these colonies. 

In the Proclamation of 1763, King George III expressly stated that 
no transfers of land should be made by any one within the limits of 
the Indian country, and settlements in this country if not directly pro- 
hibited were discouraged. However, while Colonel Wilkins was com- 
mandant he made extensive grants of land to his friends, he himself 
being interested in the grants. These grants were afterward confirmed 
by the United States government. 

It was difficult to understand why the king should forbid his sub- 
jects to settle west of the Alleghanies. One explanation was that above 
referred to an attempt to pacify the Indians. This proclamation was 
by and with the consent of the king's ministers. The English along 
the Atlantic coast were very earnest in their requests, as individuals 
and companies, to have the privilege of settling in this "Indian Coun- 
try." To all these overtures, the British ministry turned a deaf ear. 
In later years two definite and plausible reasons were assigned for the 
action of the king and his ministers. One by General Gage is as fol- 
lows: "As to increasing the settlement (northwest of the Ohio) to 
respectable provinces. ... I conceive it altogether inconsistent 
with sound policy. In the course of a few years necessity would force 
them to provide manufactures of some kind for themselves, and when 
all connection upheld by commerce with the northern country shall 
cease, it may be expected that an independency in her government will 
soon follow." The governor of Georgia wrote the Lords of Trade to 
the same effect. 


He said: "If a vast territory be granted to any set of gentlemen 
who really mean to people it, and actually do so, it must draw and 
carry out a great number of people from Great Britain, and I appre- 
hend they will soon become a kind of separate and independent people, 
who will set up for themselves, and they will soon have manufactures of 
their own, and in process of time they will soon become formidable 
enough to oppose his majesty's authority." 

In 1765, October 25, the king, George III, sent a letter of instruction 
to John Penn, Esquire, governor of Pennsylvania, calling his attention 
to the reports of settlements west of the Alleghanies by citizens of 
Penn's colony and of Virginia. He ordered Penn to use his utmost 
power to prevent settlements in this western country. Notwithstanding 
this effort of the king to keep settlers out of this territory west of 
the Alleghanies, there was, following the close of the French and In- 
dian war, a constant stream of hunters, explorers, and adventurers 
moving through the gaps in the mountains into what is now the states 
of West Virginia, Kentucky, and Tennessee. 

As early as 1747 Dr. Walker of Virginia led an exploring party 
into eastern Kentucky and named its principal stream Cumberland, 
after the Duke of Cumberland, the youngest son of George the II. 
John Finley of North Carolina and some companions visited the south- 
east part of Kentucky in 1767. Daniel Boone in company with John 
Finley, John Stewart and three other men, visited the territory of Ken- 
tucky in 1769. In this same year a band of forty hunters from the 
head waters of the Holston and Clinch in western Virginia explored 
nearly all of central Kentucky, and were gone so long that upon their 
return they were called the "Long Hunters." 

The British government had given land warrants to many who 
had served in the French and Indian war, and many of these claims 
were surveyed and located on the south side of the Ohio in 1772 and 
1773. Two noted surveyors, Thomas Bullitt and Hancock Taylor en- 
gaged in locating and surveying these claims. James Douglas, an- 
other surveyor, located claims on the Ohio in the vicinity of Louis- 
ville. Col. John Floyd and Simon Kenton together with others came 
into Kentucky about 1774. They built a cabin where the town of 
Washington, Mason county, now stands. One of their number, a Mr. 
Henderson, was burned at the stake by Indians at this point. The 
McAfees settled on a 600 acre tract where Frankfort now stands 
July 16, 1773. 

During the summer of 1774 James Harrod built Harrodsburg or 
Harrod's Town. Daniel Boone was engaged to open a road into the 
country south of the Kentucky river, and it was while opening this 
road that Boone built the first fort, June 14, 1775. The fort was 
above Harrod's Town and on the south side of the Kentucky river. 

In the fall of 1775 Hugh McGary, Richard Hogan, Thomas Den- 
ton, with their wives, and a party of some thirty more settlers, joined 
Daniel Boone in Powell's Valley just east of Cumberland Gap and 
after many hardships and dangers arrived at Boonesboro and these 
were the first families to settle in Kentucky. 

There were in Kentucky in the fall of 1775 three hundred people 
mostly men. Two hundred and thirty acres were under cultivation. 
A half million acres of land had been granted by the "Proprietors of 
the Colony of Transylvania in America." In the summer of 1775. 


George Rogers Clark, a soldier in the Dunmore wars, arrived at 
Harrodsburg, where he found much unrest about the ownership of 
the territory south of Kentucky river. A meeting was held at Har- 
rodsburg June 6, 1776, at which Clark and Gabriel Jones were chosen 
to go to "Williamsburg, Va., and ask to be seated as representatives of 
Kentucky county. The legislature had adjourned before they reached 
Williamsburg, and Clark visited Patrick Henry, the governor, then ill 
at his home. 

Clark explained the relation of the Kentucky settlers to the state of 
Virginia, and their danger from the Indians. Five hundred pounds of 
powder were ordered sent to Fort Pitt to await the order of Clark. 
Jones and Clark attended the fall session of the Virginia legislature 
and while not seated as delegates, they got a hearing and eventually 
got Kentucky organized. Clark was back in Harrodsburg in the 
summer of 1777 and assisted in the defense of that place against an 
attack by the Indians. Clark now believed that the vicious attacks 
upon the people of Kentucky by the Indians were instigated by the 
British, who were at Kaskaskia, Cahokia, Vincennes, and Detroit, 
and he evolved upon a plan of conquest of these places which will be 
explained in the next chapter. 



Hostilities in the Revolutionary war were well advanced by the spring 
of 1776. Washington had driven the British troops from Boston, Fort 
Ticonderoga had been captured by Americans and the patriot army was 
everywhere very active. 

The British maintained quite large detachments of British regulars 
in Canada, about the upper lakes, and in New York city and Boston. 
There never were many regulars stationed at Vincennes, Cahokia, or at 
Kaskaskia or Fort Chartres. 


When Fort Chartres was first constructed by Lieut. Boisbriant in 
1719, the structure was half or three-quarters of a mile from the river ; 
but as time passed the river channel changed its course and came nearer 
and nearer to the fort. In the early part of the year 1772, a flood of the 
Mississippi undermined the south side of the wall of the fort and por- 
tions thereof tumbled into the river. The garrison is said to have made 
its way across the submerged lands and took refuge on the hills near 
Prairie du Rocher, and later to have taken up their quarters at Kaskas- 
kia. Pittman was in Kaskaskia probably as a royal engineer with the 
army under Col. Fraser which reached Fort Chartres December 4, 1765, 
and remained in that region three or four years. He was in Kaskaskia 
at that time and has left quite a description of the village. He says of 
this place: "The principal buildings are the church and Jesuits' house 
which has a small chapel adjoining to it ; these as well as some other 
houses in the village, are built of stone. . . . Sixty-five families re- 
side in this village, besides merchants, other casual people, and slaves. 
The fort, which was burnt down in October, 1766 (no doubt while Pitt- 
man was in that region), stood on the summit of a high rock opposite 
the village, and on the other side of the river; it was an oblongular 
quadrangle of which the exterior polygon measured two hundred and 
ninety by two hundred and fifty feet ; it was built of very thick squared 
timber, and dovetailed at the angles. An officer and twenty soldiers are 
quartered in the village. The officer governs the inhabitants under the 
direction of the commandant at Fort Chartres. Here are also two com- 



panics of militia." This quotation from Pittman will help us to settle 
a matter of uncertainty relative to the occupation of Fort Gage by the 
British troops when they abandoned Fort Chartres in 1772 on account 
of high water. They were evidently not stationed in Fort Gage which 
was burned in 1766 since there is no record of its ever having been re- 

The Jesuits were suppressed in France in 1764 and in 1766 their 
plantation, brewery, and cattle in Kaskaskia were all sold by the French 
government, the purchaser being Monsieur Beauvais said to have been 
the richest man about Kaskaskia. The government at that time no doubt 
took possession of the Jesuits' house and other property held by the 
order in the town which no doubt included the monastery. The public 
buildings evidently became the headquarters of the British army when 
it moved from Fort Chartres in 1772. It was here they were quartered 
about fifty soldiers, when they were ordered to leave for Canada at the 
outbreak of the Revolutionary war. There were no British troops at 
Kaskaskia and probably not at any other point in the Illinois at the com- 
ing of George Rogers Clark. 

We have already called attention to the inroads of the savages into 
the country between the Alleghanies and the Ohio river. The state of 
Virginia had already furnished the Kentuckians with 500 Ibs. of powder 
and a quantity of lead. With these munitions the Kentuckians had 
been able to protect themselves against these inroads. George Rogers 
Clark had studied these Indian attacks and was convinced that these 
inroads from north of the Ohio were the result of an understanding 
between the Indians and the British commandants at Kaskaskia, Vin- 
cennes, and Detroit. 

In the summer of 1777, Clark sent two spies, Moore and Dunn, to 
Kaskaskia to determine the true situation and to bring a report of the 
military strength of the place. They returned in due season and "re- 
ported great activity on the part of the militia as well as the most ex- 
tended encouragement to the Indians in their barbarous depredations 
upon the Kentucky frontier. ' ' With this information to confirm his own 
judgment in the matter he began active measures for the conquest of the 
entire northwest territory. 


George Rogers Clark left Kentucky October 1, 1777, for Virginia to 
lay his plans before the authorities for the conquest of the British posts 
northwest of the Ohio. The people of Kentucky were very loath to let 
him go as they feared he would join the Continental army and his help 
be lost to them. But he told them he would return to them which he 
had fully determined to do. Major Clark remained in WilHamsburg 
several weeks settling the accounts of the Kentucky militia and gather- 
ing the temper of the Virginia authorities. On December 10th he felt 
he was on safe ground and he laid his plans before Governor Patrick 
Henry. The governor was in perfect harmony with the plans except 
he feared for a detachment of soldiers in so distant a region. He con- 
sulted wifti his advisers and after many conferences with Clark and his 
council the plans were all matured. 



On January 2, 1778, Col. Clark received two sets of instructions re- 
lative to his proposed expedition to the Illinois country. One set he was 
to make public for the purpose of securing recruits for the defense of 
Kentucky. These instructions were as follows : 

' ' Lieutenant Colonel George Rogers Clark : You are to proceed, with- 
out loss of time, to enlist seven companies of men, officered in the usual 
manner, to act as a militia under your orders. They are to proceed to 
Kentucky, and there to obey such orders and directions as you shall 
give them, for three months after their arrival at that place ; but to re- 
ceive pay, etc., in case they remain on duty a longer time. 

"You are empowered to raise these men in any county in the com- 
monwealth ; and the county lieutenants, respectively, are requested to 
give you all possible assistance in that business. 

"Given under my hand at Williamsburg, January 2nd, 1778. 



"Virginia in Council, Williamsburg, January 2d, 1778. Lieutenant 
Colonel George Rogers Clark: You are to proceed with all convenient 
speed to raise seven companies of soldiers, to consist of fifty men each, 
officered in the usual manner, and armed most properly for the enter- 
prise ; and with this force attack the British fort at Kaskaskia. 

"It is conjectured there are many pieces of cannon and stores, to 
considerable amount, at that place, the taking and preservation of 
which, would be a valuable acquisition to the state. If you are so for- 
tunate, therefore, as to succeed in your expedition, you will take every 
possible measure to secure the artillery and stores, and whatever may 
advantage the state. 

"For the transportation of the troops, provisions, etc., down the 
Ohio ; you are to apply to the commanding officer at Fort Pitt for boats ; 
and during the whole transaction you are to take especial care to keep 
the true destination of your force secret its success depends upon this. 
Orders are therefore given to secure the two men from Kaskaskia. Sim- 
ilar conduct will be proper in similar cases. 

"It is earnestly desired that you show humanity to such British sub- 
jects and other persons, as fall in your hands. If the white inhabitants 
at that post and the neighborhood will give undoubted evidence of their 
attachment to thia state (for it is certain they live within its limits), by 
taking the test prescribed by law, and by every other way and means in 
their power, let them be treated as fellow citizens, and their person and 
property duly secured. Assistance and protection against all enemies 
whatever shall be afforded them, and the commonwealth of Virginia is 
pledged to accomplish it. But if these people will not accede to these 
reasonable demands, they must feel the miseries of war, under the di- 
rection of that humanity that has hitherto distinguished Americans, and 
which it is expected you will ever consider the rule of your conduct, and 
from which you are in no instance to depart. 

"The corps you are to command are to receive the pay and allow- 
ance of militia and to act under the laws and regulations of this state 
now in force, as militia. The inhabitants of this post will be informed 


by you, that in case they accede to the offers of becoming citizens of this 
commonwealth, a proper garrison will be maintained among them and 
every attention bestowed to render their commerce beneficial, the fairest 
prospects being opened to the dominions of France and Spain. 

"It is in contemplation to establish a post near the mouth of the 
Ohio. Cannon will be wanted to fortify it. Part of those at Kaskaskia 
will be easily brought thither, or otherwise secured, as circumstances will 
make necessary. 

"You are to apply to Gen. Hand for powder and lead necessary for 
this expedition. If he can't supply it, the person who has that brought 
from Orleans can. Lead was sent to Hampshire, by my orders, and that 
may be delivered to you. 
' ' Wishing you success, 

"I am, sir, 

"Your humble servant, 
"P. Henry." 

Clark was to proceed to Fort Pitt where he should be provided 
with boats, powder and other necessaries. Here he was also to gather 
some troops. Recruiting officers were despatched throughout west- 
ern Virginia and Kentucky to raise seven companies of fifty men 
each. Among those who assisted in raising troops were Major Wil- 
liam B. Smith, Capt. Leonard Helm, Capt. Joseph Bowman, Capt. 
William Harrod, Capt. Dillard, Capt. Joe Montgomery. 


Upon the arrival of Clark at Fort Pitt, not being able to reveal 
his real objective, he found considerable opposition to his plans. He 
was told that it would be far better to transport the people of Ken- 
tucky over the mountains into Virginia than to attempt to defend 
them in their scattered homes. Again there was opposition to his 
expedition because it was threatening to take men from the Atlantic 
coast, who ought to be available for the greater conflict then waging 
on that side. 

On May 12, 1778, Clark left Brownsville, Pennsylvania, on the 
Monongahela, and in ordinary flat boats with a few men floated past 
Fort Pitt and on past Wheeling.- At both places he took on sup- 
plies. Early in June the little party arrived at the "Falls of the 
Ohio." Here where the present site of Louisville, Kentucky, stands, on 
Corn Island, he constructed a temporary fort and the better to cover 
his designs planted a crop of corn. Here he was joined by the en- 
listments which had been made throughout western Virginia and 
Kentucky. Clark felt that he could not longer keep his secret and 
therefore revealed his true mission to the officers and men. There 
were some desertions, but out of those left Clark organized four com- 
panies of about fifty men each. 

On the 24th of June, 1778, Clark left his encampment on Corn 
Island for his final journey down the Ohio. About twenty families 
were left on Corn Island. These had accompanied Clark from the 
vicinity of Pittsburg. They remained on the island and guarded 
some supplies which Clark left at that place. Just before starting 
down the river, Gen. Clark received a letter from Colonel John Camp- 



bell of Fort Pitt notifying him of the alliance that had been recently 
formed between France and the United States. The statement is 
made that the expedition "shot the falls" during an eclipse of the 
sun. Near the mouth of the Tennessee Gen. Clark captured some 
hunters, one of whom was John Duff. These hunters had lately been 
to Kaskaskia and could give Clark just the information that he 
wanted. They were induced to accompany the expedition down the 

Ten miles below the mouth of the Tennessee river, on the north 
side of the Ohio, stands the remains of Old Fort Massac. In 1778 



the fort was probably in good repair but not occupied. Here Clark 
disembarked. He hid his boats in the mouth of a small stream which 
enters the Ohio from Massac county a short distance above the fort. 
The expedition now made preparation to march overland to Kas- 
kaskia. Four days' rations were provided as it was thought the 
trip could be made within that time, the distance being about ninety 


There is considerable local interest as to the route Clark took 
from Fort Massac to Kaskaskia. The distance on a straight line is 
less than one hundred miles. But by any route which Clark could 


have taken the distance was not less than one hundred and ten or 
one hundred and twenty miles. 

There can be little doubt that the hunters whom Clark captured 
near the mouth of the Tennessee river, knew the different trails 
which led from Fort Massac and Golconda and the mouth of the Wa- 
bash, to Kaskaskia. There were two routes from Fort Massac to the 
prairies of Williamson county. One led from Fort Massac a little to 
the east of north until it came into the Golconda-Kaskaskia route 
somewhere west of the town of Golconda. This route after joining 
the Golconda route turned westward, passed near Allen's Springs 
postoffice and near Dixon's Springs, thence northwest near "Mill 
Stone Knob," through the Ozarks by way of Moccasin Gap, through 
the old village of Reynoldsburg, on near the crossing of the Paducah 
branch of the Illinois Central and the Big Four at Parker City, near 
the city of Marion and on to the village of Bainbridge. 

The second route went northwest from Fort Massac, keeping be- 
tween the ponds and swamps which drain into Big Bay creek on the 
right and those which border the Cache river on the left. This route 
passed out of Massac county at the extreme northwestern corner, in 
Sec. 5, Town 14 S., R. 3 E. It passed near the Forman postoffice and 
probably led over the hill upon which Indian Point is situated (An 
old road long since abandoned can be seen here). From Indian Point 
the route ran about two miles west of Vienna, Johnson county, a 
couple of miles east of the thriving village of Buncombe, thence over 
the Ozarks through Buffalo Gap which is at least one hundred and 
fifty feet lower than the rest of the Ozarks, on through Goreville 
leaving Marion to the right and joining the Golconda route at Bain- 
bridge three and one-half miles west of Marion, Williamson county. 

Clark's memoirs state that the third day from Fort Massac the 
guides got lost and there were some who thought they had turned 
traitor to their trust. Clark told the principal guide, one John 
Saunders, that if he did not find the "Hunter's Road" which led into 
Kaskaskia from the east that he would have him put to death. This 
probably meant that Clark knew he was far enough to strike the Gol- 
conda trail. This could not have been in Pope county for that junc- 
tion was only fifteen miles east of north of Fort Massac. So the ar- 
gument is quite conclusive that Clark went by way of Indian Point 
and Buffalo Gap and that he knew they ought to reach the Golconda 
road at the end of the third day. The guide found the road and the 
army was probably soon encamped the third night out, near the town 
of Bainbridge. The first night the camping ground was probably 
on Indian Point, eighteen miles from Fort Massac. The second 
night's camp was at a spring two miles north of Pulley's Mill, and 
twenty miles north of Indian Point. The third day, owing to getting 
lost they did not make more than twelve miles of progress. 

On the fourth day the little army moved west and a little north 
and crossed Crab Orchard creek northeast of Carbondale three miles. 
Big Muddy was crossed at the northwest corner of Town 9 S. R. 1 W. 
four miles due east of Murphysboro. From the crossing of Big 
Muddy to Ava, thence to Campbell Hill in the northwest corner of 
Jackson county. From here by Shiloh Hill, and Wine Hill, crossing 
St. Mary's river at Bremen Station, all in Randolph. The fourth 
night out they probably camped at six or eight miles northwest of 


Murphysboro, and the fifth night at St. Mary's river. The next day, 
which was the 4th of July, is their sixth day out. They reached the 
outskirts of Kaskaskia early in the evening. 

As soon as night came on the army moved west and reached the 
Kaskaskia river about a mile above the town. On the east side of 
the river they found a farm house in which was a large family, who 
were made prisoners. Prom this family it was learned that the mili- 
tia had been called out the day before but finding no cause for alarm, 
they had dispersed. Boats were secured and the army rowed to the 
west side of the Kaskaskia. Clark says this took two hours. 

It was now probably as late as ten or eleven o'clock in the night. 
Clark now divided his army into two divisions, one of which was to 
scatter throughout the town and keep the people in their houses, and 
the other, which Clark himself commanded, was to capture the fort 
in which the commander, Chevalier de Rocheblave, was asleep. In 
a very short time the task was finished and the people disarmed. 
The soldiers were instructed to pass up and down the streets, and 
those who could speak French were to inform the inhabitants to re- 
main within their houses. The Virginians and Kentuckians were in 
the meantime keeping up an unearthly yelling, for the people of Kas- 
kaskia had understood that Virginians were more savage than the 
Indians had ever been, and Clark was desirous that they should 
retain this impression. The French of Kaskaskia called the Virgin- 
ians "Long Knives." 

On the morning of the 5th, the principal citizens were put in 
irons. Shortly after this Father Gibault and a few aged men came to 
Clark and begged the privilege of holding services in the church, that 
they might bid one another goodbye before they were separated. 
Clark gave his permission in a very crabbed way. The church bell 
rang out over the quiet but sad village and immediately every one 
who could get to church did so. At the close of the service Father 
Gibault came again with some old men to beg that families might not 
be separated and that they might be privileged to take some of their 
personal effects with them for their support. Clark then explained 
to the priest that Americans did not make war on women and chil- 
dren, but that it was only to protect their own wives and children 
that they had come to this stronghold of British and Indian bar- 
barity. He went further and told them that the French king and the 
Americans had just made a treaty of alliance and that it was the de- 
sire of their French father that they should join their interests with 
the Americans. This had a wonderfully conciliatory effect upon the 
French. And now Clark told them they were at perfect liberty to 
conduct themselves as usual. His influence had been so powerful 
that they were all induced to take the oath of allegiance to the state 
of Virginia. Their arms were given back to them and a volunteer 
company of French militiamen was formed. 

Kaskaskia was captured on July 4, 1778. On the morning of the 
5th occurred the incident previously referred to relative to the conduct 
of the priest, etc. Evidently very early in the day quiet was restored 
and better relations were established between captors and captives. 
The treaty of alliance between France and the United States was ex- 
plained, and immediately the oath of allegiance to Virginia was taken 
by the people. On the same 5th of July an expedition was planned 


for the capture of Cahokia. Captain Bowman with his company, or 
probably a portion of it, and a detachment of the French militia under 
French officers, together with a number of Kaskaskia citizens made up 
the army. Reynolds says they rode French ponies. The distance was 
sixty miles and the trip was made by the afternoon of the 6th. At 
first the people of Cahokia were greatly agitated and cried "Long 
Knives!" "Long Knives!" But the Kaskaskia citizens soon quieted 
them and explained what had happened at Kaskaskia only two days 
before. The fort at Cahokia may have contained a few British soldiers 
or some French militia. In either case they quietly surrendered. The 
oath of allegiance was administered to the people and the citizens re- 
turned to Kaskaskia. 

For the first few days of Clark's stay in Kaskaskia he and his men 
talked about the fort at the falls of the Ohio and of a detachment of 
soldiers they were expecting from there every day. This was done for 
the purpose of making an impression upon the people of Kaskaskia. 
Clark was a shrewd diplomatist as well as a good soldier, and he sus- 
pected that Father Gibault was at heart on the side of the Americans. 
By conversation Clark learned that the priest was the regular shepherd 
of the flock at Vincennes, and evidently had very great influence with 
the people there. Clark therefore talked of his expedition against Vin- 
cennes from the fort at the falls of the Ohio. Father Gibault then 
told Clark that while the post at Vincennes was a very strong one and 
that there were usually many Indians about that place, that just at 
this time, the lieutenant governor or commandant, Edward Abbot, was 
not at Vincennes but was in Detroit. He also told Clark that there 
were no soldiers there except probably a few citizen-officers and that 
he had no doubt if the people there knew the real nature of the conflict 
between England and the colonies, and that France had joined against 
the hated British, there would be no opposition to Clark and his pur- 
poses. The priest further suggested that he himself would head an 
embassy to Post Vincennes for the purpose of attempting to secure the 
allegiance of the people there to the American cause. 

This was the most cheering word that had come to Clark in all his 
first days at Kaskaskia. An expedition was immediately planned. The 
priest should be accompanied by a citizen of Kaskaskia, Doctor John 
Baptiste Lafont. The two gentlemen were accompanied by several at- 
tendants, among whom was a spy who had secret instructions from 

They departed the 14th of July, and reached Vincennes safely. The 
priest had no difficulty in making it clear to the people that France 
was on the side of the Americans. The commander, Governor Abbot, 
had recently gone to Detroit and there was no one in military com- 
mand. They all took the oath of allegiance to Virginia. They also 
organized a militia company and took possession of the fort, over which 
the flag of Virginia floated, much to the wonder of the Indians. The 
Indians were told that the old French king, their father, had come to 
life, and if they did not want the land to be bloody with war they must 
make peace with the Americans. 

On August 1, Father Gibault and his companions returned to Kas- 
kaskia and reported the success of their mission. 

Clark was busy just then reorganizing his little army. The term 
of enlistment of the soldiers was drawing to a close, and hz saw that 


unless he could re-enlist his men, all the good that had been accom- 
plished would go for naught. Clark succeeded in re-enlisting about a 
hundred of his little army while the rest were to be mustered out at 
the falls of the Ohio, their places being filled with enlistments from 
the French militia. Captain Bowman was made military commandant 
at Cahokia, Captain Williams had charge at Kaskaskia, Captain Helm 
was sent to Vincennes to take charge and Captain Linn was sent with 
the soldiers who did not re-enlist to the falls of the Ohio, while Cap- 
tain Montgomery was sent with Chevalier de Rocheblave and dispatches, 
to Williamsburg. It had been Colonel Clark's intention to treat with 
great consideration his distinguished captive, but M. Rocheblave be- 
haved so rudely that he was sent a prisoner to Virginia, his slaves were 
confiscated and sold for 500 pounds sterling and the money distributed 
among the soldiers. 

Colonel Clark by early fall restored order and obedience in all the 
Illinois country. He soon found the need of civil courts. The courts 
established by Wilkins under the British occupation had gone into 
"innocuous desuetude." Rocheblave had given little if any attention 
to civil administration. Colonel Clark made inquiry as to the customs 
and usages of the people and decided to organize courts for the adjust- 
ment of claims and disputes. Accordingly Captain Bowman held an 
election in Cahokia at which the citizens voted and elected judges, one 
of which was Captain Bowman. Later, judges were elected at Kas- 
kaskia and at Vincennes. Colonel Clark himself constituted the appel- 
late court, and from a letter afterward written to Jefferson he must 
have been quite busy in this line of work for he says, referring to this 
matter of being relieved from civil duties, "the civil department of the 
Illinois had heretofore robbed me of too much of my time that ought 
to be spent in military reflection. I was now likely to be relieved by 
Col. John Todd. I was anxious for his arrival and happy in his ap- 
pointment, as the greatest intimacy and friendship has subsisted between 
us. I now saw myself rid of a piece of trouble that I had no delight in. ' ' 

This extract is from a letter written by Clark to Jefferson when he 
heard that Col. John Todd had been selected to administer civil gov- 
ernment in the Illinois country. 


The people of Virginia were soon aware of the success of the Clark 
expedition. The common people were of course greatly surprised, and 
the officials who had stood back of the enterprise were greatly relieved 
and delighted. The legislature in session in October took steps to extend 
civil government over the newly conquered country. 

In October, 1778, the legislature of Virginia took the following ac- 
tion creating the county of Illinois : 

All the citizens of the commonwealth of Virginia who are already 
settled or shall hereafter settle on the western side of the Ohio shall 
be included in a distinct county, which shall be called Illinois county; 
and the governor of this commonwealth with the advice of the council 
may appoint a county lieutenant or commander-in-chief, during pleas- 
ure, who shall appoint and commission as many deputy commandants, 
militia officers, and commissaries, as he shall think proper in the differ- 
ent districts, during pleasure ; all of whom, before they enter into office 


shall take the oath of fidelity to this commonwealth and the oath of 
office, according to the form of their own religion. 

And all civil officers to which the inhabitants have been accustomed 
necessary for the preservation of the peace, and the administration of 
justice, shall be chosen by a majority of the citizens in their respective 
districts to be convened for that purpose by the county lieutenant or 
commandant, or his deputy, and shall be commissioned by the said 
county lieutenant or commander-in-chief. 

The "house of delegates" which was the lower branch of the legis- 
lature shortly after the creation of the county of Illinois took the 
following action: 


Monday, the 23d Nov., 1778. 

Whereas, authentic information has been received that Lieutenant 
Colonel George Rogers Clark, with a body of Virginia militia, has re- 
duced the British posts in the western part of this commonwealth on 
the river Mississippi and its branches, whereby great advantage may 
accrue to the common cause of America, as well as to this commonwealth 
in particular: 

Resolved, That the thanks of this house are justly due to the said 
Colonel Clark and the brave officers and men under his command, for 
their extraordinary resolution and perseverance in so hazardous an 
enterprise, and for their important services to their country. 


Attest: C. H. D. 

In accordance with the provisions of the law creating the county of 
Illinois west of the Ohio river, the governor of Virginia, Patrick Henry, 
appointed John Todd, Esq., a judge of the Kentucky court, as county 
lieutenant or commander-in-chief of the newly created county. We 
shall hear more of John Todd and his work later. 

Colonel Clark in the month of September was busy making treaties 
with the Indians. He met them in council at Cahokia. Treaties were 
made with the Piankeshaws, Ouiatenons, Kickapoos, Illinois, Kaskas- 
kias, Peorias, and probably others. 

Captain Helm took possession of Vincennes about the middle of 
August. By the middle of November or earlier, word had reached 
Detroit that Captain Helm was in possession of the fort at Vincennes. 
An expedition was planned under the command of Lieutenant Governor 
Henry Hamilton, to retake the fort. He must have started from De- 
troit by the earlier part of November, for on the 4th of December, he 
had reached Fort Ouiatenon. From here he writes to General Haldi- 
man, the governor of Canada. Hamilton says he has about 200 Indians 
with him and hopes no more will join him. He was then on his way 
to capture Vincennes, which he says he has heard is quite short of 
provisions. He reached Vincennes December 18, 1778. 

The capture of Vincennes by Hamilton is so full of the humorous 
side of war that it will bear repeating. When Captain Helm was sent 
by Clark to take command at Vincennes he relied upon the fidelity of 
the militia of the village for assistance in case of an attack. When 
he heard of the approach of Hamilton he fired the signal for the assem- 


bling of the militia, but very few came, and these deserted when Ham- 
ilton's army came in sight. There were left in the fort (Fort Sack- 
ville) only two men, Captain Helm and an American by the name of 
Henry. Helm and Henry planted a cannon heavily loaded in the gate- 
way of the fort and awaited Hamilton's coming. Hamilton asked for 
a consultation which resulted in Helm's surrender of the fort provided 
his army should be permitted to march out with the honors of war. 
This was granted and Hamilton's army of thirty British regulars, fifty 
Canadians, and four hundred Indians, was drawn up in line to receive 
the surrendered army with the courtesies of military regulations. When 
everything was in readiness, Captain Helm and private Henry, with 
drawn sword and flag flying came marching out and formally surren- 
dered Fort Sackville, its brave defenders, and its munitions of war. 
Captain Helm and Henry were held prisoners of war in Fort Sackville. 

Word soon reached Colonel Clark of the loss of Vincennes, and he 
now felt himself in a very perilous situation. Vincennes was lost, Vir- 
ginia had not sent him a dollar with which to purchase supplies, the 
money he had was of no value, the Indians from the Canadian border 
were making their appearance around Cahokia and Kaskaskia, and dis- 
couragement stared him in the face. 

In this extremity a real patriot came upon the scene. This man 
was Colonel Francis Vigo, a native of Mongovia, Sardinia. He had 
served in the Spanish army but was now a rich merchant of St. Louis. 
He sympathized with the American cause and was so deeply interested 
in Clark that he supplied his army with clothing and provision to the 
extent of above $20,000, which was never repaid during Colonel Vigo's 

Colonel Vigo proffered his services to Colonel Clark. Clark sent 
him over to Vincennes to see what the situation was. He was captured 
and would have been severely punished by Hamilton if it had not been 
for fear of the French, Indians, and Spanish, all of whom were great 
friends to Vigo. He was released and returned to St. Louis, and imme- 
diately came to Kaskaskia to inform Colonel Clark of the true situation. 
This was that Hamilton had a strong detachment of soldiers at Fort 
Sackville with cannon and plenty of munitions of war. Vigo also re- 
ported that the French inhabitants were quite favorable to the Amer- 
ican cause and would render any assistance they could. And again 
Vigo reported that just as soon as the spring season opened that Col- 
onel Hamilton was intending to attack Colonel Clark at Kaskaskia. 

A conference was called of all the officers then around Kaskaskia. 
Captain Bowman came from Cahokia with his small force of soldiers 
and the first impulse was to get ready for a siege if Colonel Hamilton 
should attack. This plan was finally abandoned, for Colonel Clark 
said "If I do not take Hamilton he will take me." 



Vigo reported to Colonel Clark on the 29th of January, and with 
such dispatch did Clark make preparation for his expedition that he 
was ready to move by the 6th of February, 1779. Everything in the 
village of Kaskaskia was activity. "The whole country took fire with 
alarm; and every order was executed with cheerfulness by every de- 
scription of the inhabitants preparing provisions, encouraging vol- 
unteers, etc., and as we had plenty of stores, every man was com- 
pletely rigged with what he could desire to withstand the cold 
weather. To convey our artillery and stores, it was concluded to 
send a vessel round by water, so strong that she might force her way. 
A large Mississippi (keel) boat was immediately purchased, and com- 
pletely fitted out as a galley, mounting two four-pounders and four 
large swivels. She was manned by forty-six men under command of 
Capt. John Rogers." The vessel was called "The Willing." This 
vessel was to sail down the Mississippi, up the Ohio, and thence up 
the Wabash as far as the mouth of the White river and there wait for 
word from the overland expedition. The vessel moved down the 
Kaskaskia and out into the broad Mississippi on the 4th of February, 
1779, while the land forces moved the 7th. 

The little army, consisted of one hundred and seventy men. One 
company of French militiamen from Cahokia was in charge of Cap- 
tain McCarty. Another French company from Kaskaskia was com- 
manded by Captain Charleville. Captains Bowman, Williams, and 
Worthington commanded the Virginians. The route they took is 
said to have been the old trail from Kaskaskia to Vincennes. Rey- 
nolds says it was laid out by the Indians nearly a hundred years be- 
fore Clark made use of it. 


The route as laid down in volume 8 of "Historic Highways" starts 
from Kaskaskia and goes northeast to Diamond Point some fo\ir or 
five miles from Kaskaskia. Here they may have halted a day or so. 
From Diamond Point the route ran northeasterly to Sparta in Ran- 
dolph county. Thence to the southeast of Coulterville about a mile, 




thence to Nashville in Washington county in nearly a direct line. 
From here the trail ran easterly and crossed the Illinois Central 
within a mile north of Richview. The corner of Jefferson was crossed 
and Walnut Hill in the southwestern corner of Marion was passed. 
From Walnut Hill in a nearly straight line to Xenia, Clay county. 

From here the route follows almost exactly the Baltimore and 
Ohio Southwestern Railroad to Lawrenceville, leaving Olney to the 
north probably two miles. From Lawrenceville the army turned 
south and followed the Embarras river on the southwest side, cross- 
ing the Wabash about two miles south of St. Francisville. From here 


the route went east bearing toward the north till they reached Chim- 
ney Rock or what Clark called the Second Mamelle, now called 
Chimney Pier. From here nearly due north to the village of Vin- 
cennes. (See map of Clark's routes.) 

The story of the hardships, and the extreme suffering from cold 
and hunger which this little army endured, will ever be a tale with 
which to stir the patriotic blood of all loyal Illinoisians. Probably 
nothing more than the hardships incident to any military campaign- 
ing was experienced until they reached the Little Wabash February 
13. Here they had to build a boat in which they ferried their bag- 
gage, ammunition and men. The Little Wabash was crossed at a 
point some three and one-half miles above the union of that stream 
and what is called Big Muddy creek. Big Muddy runs toward the 
south and nearly parallel with the Little Wabash. The space be- 
tween was three miles wide. This is low land and is often over 
flowed. At this time the two streams had formed one great wide flood 


too deep to be waded. A platform was built in three feet of water, 
and the packhorses were brought to this platform where their bur- 
dens were transferred to the boat. A similar platform was built on 
the opposite shore three miles away where the boat unloaded its 
cargo. The shallow water from each edge of the flood to the plat- 
forms was nearly a mile wide which made the entire flood five miles. 

When they reached the opposite shore they were ordered to lire 
no more guns for fear of revealing their coming to the British. They 
were now forty miles almost due west of Vincennes. Clark writes 
of the crossing of the two streams as follows : 

This (flood) would have been enough to have stopped any set of 
men not in the same temper that we were. But in three days we con- 
trived to cross by building a large canoe, ferried across the two chan- 
nels; the rest of the way we waded building scaffolds at each side to 
lodge our baggage on until the horses crossed to take them. 

On the 16th of February the army crossed Fox river which runs 
southward just a mile or so west of Olney. 

They pushed forward through rain and mud and reached the Em- 
barras river in the afternoon of the 17th. Here they were within 
about eight or nine miles of Vincennes but all the lowland between 
the Embarras river and the Wabash was flooded and no boats could 
be found in which to cross. Here the army turned south and traveled 
along the west side of the Embarras hunting a dry spot on which to 
camp. Captain Bowman says they "traveled till 8 o'clock in mud 
and water" before a camping spot could be found. "18th At day- 
break heard Hamilton's morning gun. (They were then ten miles 
southwest of Vincennes.) Set off and marched down the river (Em- 
barras), saw some fine land. About two o'clock came to the bank of 
the Wabash." 

Here they spent the next three days, building rafts, digging 
canoes, and trying to cross the Wabash. The food was all gone. Ma- 
jor Bowman's journal says on the 19th "Many of the men cast 
down particularly the volunteers. No provisions now of any sort, 
two days, hard fortune." On the 20th, they captured five French- 
men from Vincennes who said that Hamilton was ignorant of Clark's 
presence on the Wabash. They killed a deer on this day. On the 
21st the army was ferried over by the aid of two canoes. They landed 
on the east side of the Wabash and rested on a little knob called "The 
Mamelle." From here they plunged into the water and made toward 
the next "Mamelle" about three miles eastward. Here the little 
army stayed over night and on the morning of the 22nd of February, 
they moved northward through water to their waists and even to 
their shoulders. In addition to the deep water Clark says the morn- 
ing of the 22nd was the coldest they had had and that the ice was 
over the water from half to three-quarters of an inch. From the sec- 
ond "Mamelle" to the next dry ground was about one and a half 
miles. Clark says "Getting about the middle of the plain, the water 
about mid-deep, I found myself sensibly failing, and as there were 
no trees nor bushes for the men to support themselves by, I feared 
that many of the most weak would be drowned. . . . Getting to 
the woods where the men expected land, the water was up to my 
shoulders, but gaining the woods was of great consequence; all the 
low men and the weakly hung to the trees, and floated on old logs. 


until they were taken off by the canoes. The strong and tall got 
ashore and built fires. Many would reach the shore and fall with 
their bodies half in the water not being able to support themselves 
without it." Providentially an Indian canoe with squaws and chil- 
dren was captured. In this canoe was half a quarter of buffalo meat, 
some corn, tallow, kettles, etc. Those were confiscated, the food pre- 
pared, and served to the weakest ones, though there was a little broth 
for all. This meal and the sunshiny weather greatly strengthened 
the troops and they took up their march in the afternoon of the 22nd, 
for the town and fort then only about four miles away. They reached 
the town shortly after dark and while the main body of the troops 
took up their position in the village, a detachment of fourteen men 
under Lieutenant Bailey attacked the fort. 


Shortly after the army came in sight of the town, Colonel Clark 
issued a proclamation directed to the people of the village which was 
intended as a warning to those inhabitants who were in any way 
sympathetic with the British interests. It read as follows : 

To the Inhabitants of Post Vincennes : 

Gentlemen : Being now within two miles of your village, with 
my army, determined to take your fort this night, and not being will- 
ing to surprise you, I take this method to request such of you as are 
true citizens and willing to enjoy the liberty I bring you, to remain 
still in your houses. And those, if any there be, that are friends to 
the king will instantly repair to the fort arid join the hair-buyer 
general, and fight like men. And if any such as do not go to the fort 
shall be discovered afterwards, they may depend on severe punish- 
ment. On the contrary, those who are true friends to liberty may 
depend on being well treated, and I once more request them to keep 
out of the streets. For every one 1 find in arms on my arrival I shall 
treat him as an enemy. 

G. R. Clark. 

The inhabitants of Vincennes, who were at heart favorable to the 
Virginians, having heard that their ammunition powder, bullets, 
and other munitions was to be moved to Detroit, buried it to pre- 
vent its capture by the British. These munitions were now given to 
Clark. The bombardment of the fort was kept up nearly all night, 
and till 9 o'clock on the morning of the 24th. The firing then ceased 
and Colonel Clark sent a note demanding the surrender of the fort. 
To this note Lieutenant Governor Hamilton sent a very short reply 
"Governor Hamilton begs leave to acquaint Colonel Clark, that he 
and his garrison are not to be awed into any action unworthy British 
subjects." The firing was renewed and kept up vigorously till in 
the afternoon when Governor Hamilton proposed a truce of three 
days. Clark refused, but proposed to meet Governor Hamilton at the 
church to consider any proposition he might have to make. Hamil- 
ton was accompanied by Lieutenant Helm who had been a British 
prisoner since he and Moses Henry surrendered the fort the 17th of 
December, 1778. Hamilton made a proposition of surrender but Clark 
would not accept it. A parley ensued in which Clark told Hamilton 


that if he had to storm the fort he feared that his men could not be 
restrained from deeds of violence. Both commanders resumed their 
places but no firing occurred. Later in the afternoon Colonel Clark 
made out articles of capitulation which were satisfactory to Hamil- 
ton. And on the 25th of February the fort was turned over to the 
victorious frontiersmen. 

There were regular British soldiers in the fort and large quanti- 
ties of stores said to be worth fifty thousand dollars. Word was re- 
ceived that a large quantity of supplies was on the way down the 
Wabash from Detroit destined for the British garrison. Clark dis- 
patched Captain Helm to discover and capture this merchandise. 
This he did and returned in a few days with clothing and supplies 
valued at ten thousand pounds sterling. Clark's troops who were 
very greatly in need of clothing were now abundantly supplied. 
Colonel Hamilton and a few of the officers were sent to Williamsburg 
while the soldiers were paroled and allowed to return to Detroit. 

Colonel Clark desired very much to attack Detroit, but after con- 
siderable delay he decided to return to Kaskaskia. Before leaving 
Vincennes he made treaties with the neighboring Indians. He ap- 
pointed Captain Helm as civil commandant. Lieutenant Brashear 
was made military commander at the fort, and was given forty sol- 
diers for that duty. Colonel Clark and the remainder of his army 
departed March 20, 1779, for Kaskaskia on the galley the "Willing," 
accompanied by an armed flotilla of seven vessels. The trip down the 
Wabash and Ohio and up the Mississippi to Kaskaskia was without 
incident. Clark reached Kaskaskia about the latter part of March. 

Clark returned to Vincennes in July of the same year expecting to 
find troops from Kentucky and Virginia for the Detroit expedition. He 
was disappointed. He attempted to recruit soldiers for the Detroit cam- 
paign in the region of the Ohio but a letter from Jefferson who was now 
governor of Virginia requestes him to construct a fort below the mouth of 
the Ohio. Accordingly he undertook this enterprise and by June, 1780, 
Fort Jefferson, a few miles below the mouth of the Ohio on the Kentucky 
side, was completed. It is said that some of the cannon were removed 
there from the abandoned fortifications of Fort Chartres. The ruins of 
Fort Jefferson, just below the town of Wycliffe, Ky., may be seen today. 
In the fall of 1780, Clark was at Fort Pitt trying to fit out his expedi- 
tion for Detroit. In January, 1781, we find Colonel Clark acting in 
conjunction with Baron Steuben in repelling the attacks of Benedict 
Arnold upon Virginia. In December, 1781, Clark was at the falls of 
the Ohio with an army of 750 men. Later he was engaged in an 
expedition against the Indians on the Miami river. He never led his 
expedition against Detroit. In the summer of 1783, he received the 
following communication : 

In council, July 2, 1783. 

Sir: The conclusion of the war, and the distressed situation of the 
state, with regard to its finances, call on us to adopt the most prudent 
economy. It is for this reason alone, I have come to a determination to 
give over all thought, for the present, of carrying on an offensive war 
against the Indians, which, you will easily perceive, will render the ser- 
vices of a general officer in that quarter unnecessary, and will, therefore 
consider yourself out of command. But. before I take leave of you, I 
feel myself called upon, in the most forcible manner, to return you my 


thanks, and those of my council, for the very great and singular service 
you have rendered your country, in wresting so great and valuable a 
territory from the hands of the British enemy ; repelling the attacks of 
their savage allies, and carrying on a successful war in the heart of their 
country. This tribute of praise and thanks so justly due, I am happy to 
communicate to you, as the united voice of the executive. 
I am, with respect, sir, 

Yours, etc., 
Benjamin Harrison. 

Now that we are about to leave our hero for the consideration of 
other men and other interests, it may be that some will be curious to 
know what was the end of a man to whom the United States owes so much. 
We quote from Brown 's History of Illinois : 

' ' He was no longer the same man as the conqueror of Kaskaskia, and 
the captor of Vincennes. His mind was wounded by the neglect of the 
government of Virginia to settle his accounts. Private suits were brought 
against him for public supplies, which ultimately swept away his for- 
tune, and with this injustice the spirit of the hero fell, and the general 
never recovered the energies which stamped him as one of nature's 
noblemen. ' ' 

He spent the later years of his life near Louisville, Kentucky. He 
was completely broken in his bodily frame as a result of years of hard 
exposure. Rheumatism which ended with paralysis terminated his life 
in 1818. He was buried at Locust Grove near Louisville. 


By virtue of the authority of the act of the Virginia legislature of 
October, 1778, Patrick Henry, governor of Virginia, and by virtue of 
that position the first governor of Illinois, appointed Colonel John Todd 
lieutenant-commandant of the county of Illinois. Col. Todd's com- 
mission bears date of December 12, 1778. Colonel Todd was at the time 
of his appointment as lieutenant-commandant of Illinois county, a 
judge on the bench in Kentucky. 

Colonel Todd did not come to Illinois county till May, 1779. Clark 
had returned from his campaign, and capture of Vincennes. It is stated 
that Col. Todd was received with great joy by the citizens of Kaskaskia. 
He was no stranger to many about the village for he had come with Clark 
in the campaign of 1778, when the Illinois country was captured from 
the British. He is said to have been a soldier with Clark and to have 
been the first to enter the fort which Rocheblave surrendered. Be that 
as it may, he comes now with the authority of the commonwealth of Vir- 
ginia. On June 15, 1779, he issued a proclammation which provided 
that no more settlements should be made in the bottom lands, and fur- 
ther that each person to whom grants had been made must report his 
claim to the proper officer and have his land recorded. If his land had 
come to him through transfers, then all such transfers must be recorded 
and certified to. This was done to prevent those adventurers who 
would shortly come into the country from dispossessing the rightful 
owners of those lands. 

The country to which Col. John Todd came as county-lieutenant was 
in a very discouraging condition. It had reached the maximum of pros- 


perity about the time the French turned it over to the English in 1765. 
Very many of the French went to New Orleans or to St. Louis during 
the British regime. The English king had attempted to keep out the 
immigrant. The cultivation of the soil was sadly neglected. The few 
French who remained were engaged in trading with the Indians. Many 
came to be expert boatmen. Trade was brisk between the French settle- 
ments in the Illinois country and New Orleans. 

Previous to the coming of Clark the French gentleman, Chevalier 
de Rocheblave, who was holding the country in the name of the British 
government, had been not only neglectful but really very obstinate and 
self willed about carrying on civil affairs. He allowed the courts, or- 
ganized by Colonel "Wilkins, to fall into disuse. The merchants and 
others who had need for courts found little satisfaction in attempts to 
secure justice. During the time between the coming of Clark and of 
Todd, there were courts organized but the military operations were so 
overshadowing that probably little use was made of them. 

Patrick Henry, governor of Virginia, made out Colonel Todd's com- 
mission and in addition gave him a lengthy letter of instructions. 
Todd was directed 

To cultivate the affection of the French and Indians. 

To impress the people with the value of liberty. 

To guarantee an improved jurisprudence. 

To consult and advise with the most intelligent and upright persons 
who might fall in his way. 

To hold the property of the Indians, particularly the land, invi- 

To cultivate the good will and confidence of the Spanish command- 
ant and his people at St. Louis. 

To see that the wife of Chevalier de Rocheblave should have re- 
stored to her the property of which she was bereft when her husband 
was sent a prisoner to Williamsburg. 

To subordinate the military to the civil authority. 

To encourage trade. 

And to carry out the above principles with "unwearied diligence." 

This was no ordinary arrival (the arrival of Todd) at the goodly 
French village of Kaskaskia. In eighty years of its existence it had 
seen explorers and missionaries, priests and soldiers, famous travelers 
and men of high degree come and go, but never before one sent to ad- 
minister the laws of a people's government for the benefit of the gov- 

It appears from the records of Colonel Todd that on the 14th of 
May, 1779, he organized the military department of his work, by ap- 
pointing the officers of the militia at Kaskaskia, Prairie du Rocher, 
and Cahokia. Richard Winston, Jean B. Barbeau, and Francois 
Trotier were made commandants and captains in the three villages 

The next step was to elect judges provided for in the act creating the 1 
county of Illinois. Judges were elected at Cahokia, Kaskaskia, and at 
Vincennes, and court was held monthly. There seems to have been a 
scarcity of properly qualified men for the places as in many instances 
militia officers were elected judges, and in one case the "Deputy-Com- 
mandant at Kaskaskia filled also the office of sheriff. ' ' 

Todd issued permits or charters of trade and encouraged those about 


him to engage in business. He also gave attention to the subject of 
land-claims. No new claims were to be recognized except such as were 
made according to the custom of the French inhabitants. 

Colonel Todd found enough work to keep him busy and it is doubt- 
ful if it was all as pleasant as he might have wished. The records which 
he kept, and which are now in the keeping of the Chicago Historical 
Society, show that severe penalties were inflicted in those days. On 
page 18, bearing date of June 13, is the following order: 

Illinois to-wit: to Richard Winston, Esq., Sheriff-in-Chief of the 
District of Kaskaskia. 

Negro Manuel, a Slave in your custody, is condemned by the court 
of Kaskaskia, after having made honorable Fine at the door of the 
Church, to be chained to a post at the Water Side, and there to be 
burnt alive and his ashes scattered, as appears to me by Record. 

This sentence you are hereby required to put in execution on Tues- 
day next at 9 o'clock in the morning, and this shall be your warrant. 

Given under my hand and seal at Kaskaskia the 13th day of June 
(1779) in the third year of the commonwealth. 

Jno. Todd. 

A similar case to the above is also recorded in the record book kept 
by Colonel Todd. It appears that witchcraft among the negro slaves 
was a common thing in the French villages, and the punishment was 
death. In Reynold's History there is a statement that a negro by the 
name of Moreau was hanged for witchcraft in Cahokia in 1790. But in 
the record book kept by Todd this entry occurs : 

To Capt. Nicholas Janis. 

You are hereby required to call upon a party of your militia to 
guard Moreau, a slave condemned to execution, up to the town of Cohos 
(Cahokia). Put them under an officer. They shall be entitled to pay 
rations and refreshments during the time they shall be upon duty to be 
certified hereafter by you. I am sir, 

Your humble servant, 

Jno. Todd 
15th June, 1779. 

Colonel Todd held this position of county-lieutenant for about three 
years. During that time he established courts, held popular elections, 
and executed the law with vigor. 

In the spring of 1780 he was elected a delegate from the county of 
Kentucky to the Virginia legislature. He attended the sessions of the 
legislature and while at the capital married. In the fall he returned to 
Lexington, Kentucky, where he left his bride and came to Illinois 
county. In the spring or summer of 1781, Governor Jefferson appointed 
Todd colonel of Fayette county, Kentucky. He purposed settling in 
Richmond, Virginia, permanently, but in August he was temporarily 
in Lexington when an attack was made on the town by Indians. The 
retreating redskins were pursued, and at the Battle of Blue Licks, 
fought August 18, 1782, Todd was killed. 

There was a deputy county-lieutenant or deputy-commandant in 
each village, and when Colonel Todd was absent, the reins of govern- 
ment were in the hands of one of these deputies. On the occasion of 
his absence at the time of his death he had left, it seems, Timothy De- 

VoL 17 


mountbrun as county lieutenant. This man seems to have been the 
only one authorized to rule, till the coming of St. Clair in 1790. 


In the famous resolution introduced into the Continental congress 
by Richard Henry Lee, of Virginia, on June 7, 1776, there were three 
distinct provisions: 

1. That we are and of right ought to be free and independent states. 

2. That we ought to form a National government. 

3. That we ought to send ministers abroad to solicit aid in estab- 
lishing our independence. 

The resolutions were adopted. A committee known as the Grand 
Committee consisting of one representative from each state, was ap- 
pointed to draw up the form of government. This committee reported 
what came to be known as the Articles of Confederation. This docu- 
ment provided that it should go into effect when it should be ratified by 
all of the thirteen colonies. By the spring of 1781, all the states had 
ratified except Maryland. This state refused to ratify the article un- 
less all the states that had claims to western lands should cede their 
lands to the United States to be disposed of for the good of the govern- 
ment as a whole. Massachusetts, Connecticut, New York, Virginia, the 
two Carolinas, and Georgia had claims to western lands. These states 
after due consideration of all of the interests involved in the refusal of 
Maryland to endorse the articles, agreed to cede their lands ; and Mary- 
land, on the 1st of March, 1781, ratified the Articles of Confederation 
and the government went into operation under the articles on the 2d 
of the same month. 

By reference to a former chapter it will be seen that Virginia, 
Connecticut, and Massachusetts all had claims to land lying within the 
present state of Illinois. Virginia's claim rested on her "sea to sea" 
grant of 1609. But in addition she claimed the territory now included 
in Illinois, because her troops had captured this territory from the 
British, and her civil government had been extended over it as has been 
shown in the last chapter. 

Virginia passed her ordinance of cession in October, 1783, which 
authorized her representatives in congress to sign the deed of transfer. 
This deed of transfer was duly signed by Thomas Jefferson, Samuel 
Hardy, Arthur Lee, and James Monroe, December 20, 1783. From this 
time forward Virginia had no more interest in the Illinois country than 
had any other state, except that there were reserved certain lands which 
she wished to use in payment of her soldiers. 


In 1784 congress passed an ordinance which was to serve as a basis 
of civil government in the territory north of the Ohio river, until such 
time as there should be sufficient population to justify the admission 
of the territory into the union as states. In 1785 a system of surveys 
was adopted by congress which probably was the beginning of what 
afterward was called the rectangular system of surveys. The public 
land was to be laid off in squares six miles each way, and each six miles 
square was then to be subdivided into squares of one mile on a side. 


The law of 1784 provided for an officer corresponding to our surveyor 
general. Thomas Hutchins, formerly an engineer in the British army 
was appointed to this office, and his work was very valuable in the 
early settlement of the west. The ordinance of 1784 was intended to 
provide a means by which the inhabitants could organize a temporary 
government. It assumed that the country could be or was settled. And 
until such time as the inhabitants should call on congress to provide a 
temporary government for them there was really no government for 
the people. No one came into the new territory and no land was sold 
as a result of the land surveys. Probably there would have been very 
little interest in making settlements in the territory for some time if it 
had not been for an organization gotten up in Massachusetts which 
had for its purpose the exchange of depreciated certificates of indebt- 
edness, held by Revolutionary officers against the general government, 
for western lands. As early as 1783 petitions had been sent to congress 
asking for the setting aside of land immediately west of Pennsylvania 
for the use of Revolutionary soldiers and others. Out of this mover 
ment there was organized in Boston, March 3, 1786, the Ohio Company 
of Associates. This organization purposed "The conversion of those 
old final certificates into future homes, westward of the Ohio . . . 
and the formation of a new state." 


This new land company sent Gen. S. H. Parsons to congress, which 
was then sitting in New York to lay a proposition before that body. It 
was referred to a committee for consideration. Dr. Manasseh Cutler, 
of Massachusetts, appeared upon the scene just as the new ordinance 
was being considered. Doctor Cutler was busily engaged in consulta- 
tion with committees and with members and as an outcome of it all, 
congress passed the Ordinance of 1787. Very briefly this ordinance 
provided : 

1. The territory northwest of the Ohio was made one district for 
temporary government. 

2. That property of resident or non-resident persons, dying intes- 
tate, should descend to legal heirs in equal parts. 

3. Congress should appoint a governor, secretary, and three judges 
to administer civil law. 

4. The governor and judges should adopt and publish such laws 
from the original states as were found suited to conditions in the new 

5. The governor was to be the commander-in-chief of the military 

6. The governor should appoint all needed civil officers until such 
time as a legislature was organized, after which, the creation of local 
offices was left with that body. 

7. All laws, rules, orders, or regulations were to be enforced in 
all parts of the territory. 

8. When the population reached 5,000 free male inhabitants of 
full age, a representative assembly should be granted. 

9. The general assembly or territorial legislature should consist of 
(1) governor, (2) the council, (3) the house of representatives, con- 
sisting of one representative to every 500 free male inhabitants. 


10. The legislature should send one delegate to congress who should 
have the right of debate but not of voting. 

11. There shall be freedom of religious belief and practice. 

12. The inhabitants shall have (1) the privilege of the writ of 
habeas corpus; (2) the right of trial by jury; (3) processes of the 
common law; (4) right of bail; (5) exemption from excessive fines 
and punishments. 

13. The utmost good faith toward the Indians must be preserved. 

14. The legislature of the states when formed, shall not interfere 
with the congress in the disposition of the public lands. 

15. States may be admitted into the union when the population 
will justify it. 

16. Slavery nor involuntary servitude, except as a punishment 
for crimes whereof the person shall have been convicted, shall not 
exist within the said territory northwest of the Ohio river. 

As soon as this Ordinance was passed there sprang up quite an ac- 
tive interest in the matter of making settlements in this northwest 
territory. Congress sold large tracts of land. This Ohio Land Com- 
pany bought about 2,000,000 acres on the Muskingum river, but paid 
for only about half that amount. Other large sales were made, and 
immigration set in. The Rev. Manasseh Cutler's company of forty- 
eight persons from Massachusetts reached the Muskingum April 7, 1788, 
where they founded Marietta, Ohio. 


Following the passage of the Ordinance of 1787, July 13, congress 
appointed the officials as follows : Governor, Gen. Arthur St. Clair ; 
secretary, Winthrop Sargent; judges, Samuel Holden Parsons, James 
M. Varnum, and John Cleves Symmes. The governor arrived at Mari- 
etta July 9, 1787, but Judge Varnum preceded him, for he made a 4th 
of July speech at Marietta, five days before the coming of the governor. 

On the 15th of July Governor St. Clair created Washington county, 
northwest territory. In September the governor and judges adopted 
a code of laws for the territory. In January these officials came to 
Losantiville, opposite the mouth of Licking river, which they changed 
to Cincinnati. Here they created the county of Hamilton. This point 
was made the seat of government. 

The governor and secretary proceeded westward and reached Kas- 
kaskia on the 5th of March, 1790. Here they created the county of 
St. Clair. Later, on the journey back toward the seat of government, 
the county of Knox was organized. There were thus four counties and 
four county seats Washington county, Marietta the county seat ; Ham- 
ilton county, Cincinnati the county seat ; St. Clair county, Cahokia the 
county seat; Knox county, Vincennes the county seat. 


Let us now recall the condition in which we left the Illinois country. 
Colonel Todd whose coming promised so much, in 1779, seems to have 
served the people of Illinois but a short time. He was nominally the 
civil commandant up to the day of his death, August 18, 1782. But 
from the day he left in the summer of 1780, the good order and quiet 


on-going began to decline. John Gabriel Cerre, a very prominent citi- 
zen of St. Louis and formerly a merchant in Kaskaskia, was before a 
committee in congress in July, 1786, and upon being interrogated re- 
plied as follows: 

Question Were the people of the Illinois heretofore governed by 
the laws of Canada or by usages and customs of their own, or partly 
by one and partly by the other? 

Answer The people of Illinois were governed before the conquest 
of Canada by the same laws as the people of Canada, which were of 
the same nature as those of old France adapted to the particular cir- 
cumstances of the country. They had local customs which were equally 
binding as the laws and after the conquest the British commandants 
were civil judges who governed by the same laws and customs as the 
people lived under before the conquest of Canada ; all public transac- 
tions being recorded in French for the information of the country. 
Criminal cases were referred to England. 

Question By what law or usages and by what judges is criminal 
and civil justice dispensed at this time? 

Answer In 1779, when Colonel Todd went into that country, the 
people chose six magistrates to govern them according to the French 
laws and customs, which magistrates were empowered by Colonel Todd 
to judge in criminal cases. After the troops were withdrawn the power 
of the magistrates was annihilated and everything fell into anarchy and 
confusion the state of affairs at this time (1786). 

Question What is the computed number of inhabitants in the whole 
Illinois district, and what proportion of them are slaves? 

Answer There may be in the towns on the Mississippi about 300 
white inhabitants, including American settlers who may number about 
50. There are, moreover, about 250 slaves. 

Between the leaving of Todd in 1782 and the coming of St. Clair, 
1790, there were several years of disorder and confusion. There was 
the constant decrease of the population; there were no courts; there 
was no money in circulation. There were only sixty-five Americans 
who could bear arms in 1791, and only 300 militia of all nationalities. 
There were probably not more than a thousand souls in the Illinois 
country at this time. A few people were coming into this region. Two 
families. McElmurry and Flannery, settled in Alexander county oppo- 
site Goose Island as early as 1783. Other settlements were made and a 
few block houses were built. Reynolds mentions quite a number of 
American pioneers who came into Illinois prior to 1790. James Moore 
settled near the present town of Waterloo at a place called Slab Spring. 
Shadrach Bond, Sr., uncle of Governor Bond, James Garrison, and 
Robert Kidd settled Blockhouse fort. These men arrived about 1781, 
and all came to be highly respected, useful citizens. One of the most 
noted immigrants of these early times was Gen. John Edgar. He had 
been in the service of Great Britain but gave it up for the American 
cause. He came to Kaskaskia in 1784. His name is intimately asso- 
ciated with the early history of the country. He was quite wealthy 
and was very generous. He died in 1832. 

When Governor St. Clair and Winthrop Sargent reached Kaskas- 
kia, they must have been greatly disappointed in the condition and 
character of the people, for Governor St. Clair, writing from Cahokia 
to the secretary of war, says r 'They are the most ignorant people in 


the world ; there is not a 50th man that can either read or write. ' ' They 
were all so poor. They had contributed to Clark's needs more liberally 
than they were able, and the certificates which Clark issued in payment 
for supplies were still held by, these poor settlers. In addition to all 
this there had been three recent inundations of the Mississippi bottoms. 
Not only had crops been washed away but the planting had been pre- 
vented and much distress had resulted. 

As has been stated, St. Glair and his secretary reached Kaskaskia 
in March, 1790. On April 27, Governor St. Clair established the county 
of St. Clair. It included all the territory north and east of the Ohio 
and the Mississippi and Illinois rivers, and west of the line running 
from Port Massac through the mouth of the Mackinaw creek a short 
distance below the city of Peoria. 

The county was divided into three districts with the three towns of 
Kaskaskia, Prairie du Rocher, and Cahokia as centers of administra- 
tion. The governor created a number of offices and filled them before 
leaving the territory. The most important were : 

Sheriff "William Biggs. 

Judges of the Court Jean Barbeau, John Edgar, Antoine Gerar- 
din, Philip Engle, John de Moulin. 

Probate Judge Bartholomew Tardiveau. 

Among the other officers were justices of the peace, coroner, notary, 
clerk and recorder, surveyor, lieutenant colonel, major, captains, etc. 
The laws which the governor and the three judges had adopted, together 
with those which they should adopt, were the laws to be administered. 
It is probable that little official work was done by the officers whom St. 
Clair left in St. Clair county. The courts seldom convened, and the 
militia men are said to have refused to serve. There was not much 
difference between the condition of things before and after St. Glair's 

In 1795, Judge Turner, one of the three federal judges, came to hold 
court and out of a contention between him and St. Clair the county of 
St. Clair was divided into two counties by a line running due east and 
west through New Design. The north half was called St. Clair county 
with Cahokia for the county seat, while the south half was called Ran- 
dolph county with Kaskaskia as the county seat. 

There were two sources of annoyance to the people of Illinois be- 
tween 1785 and 1800. These were the Indian troubles and the conduct 
of Spain in relation to the use of the lower Mississippi. 

The Kickapoo Indians were quite active in marauding campaigns 
into Illinois. There does not seem to have been any real military cam- 
paigns and the work on the part of the whites consisted chiefly in de- 
fending their homes against the Indian attacks. Block houses were 
built wherever there were settlers and in many instances stockades were 
provided for the safety of stock as well as of the people. A number of 
people were killed in the Illinois country. William Biggs, afterward 
the sheriff of St. Clair county, was captured by a band of Kickapoos on 
the 28th of March, 1788. He lived at Bellefontaine, and on the above 
date, early in the morning he was going to Cahokia on horseback with 
a load of beaver furs, accompanied by one John Vallis. They had not 
gone far till they were fired on. Vallis was wounded in the thigh and 
died in a few weeks. Biggs was not hit by the Indians but his horse 
received four bullet wounds. Biggs was captured and was taken to an 


Indian village and after being held for several weeks was released and 
came home. In 1826 he wrote out and published the entire story of his 
capture which is very interesting. 

The other matter referred to, the Spaniards ' refusal of the use of the 
lower Mississippi, did not concern the Illinois people very much. Spain 
held New Orleans from 1763 till its recession to France. During a part 
of that time Spain refused to allow our river boats to land our produce 
on the wharf for reshipment. But in 1795 a treaty was made with that 
country by which we secured the privilege of the right of "deposit." 
From this time till the purchase of Louisiana we had free access to the 
Port of New Orleans. 


The Ordinance of 1787 provided that when there should be 5,000 free 
male whites of the age of twenty-one years in the Northwest territory 
they might organize a legislature on the basis of one representative for 
each 500 whites of the age of twenty-one. This was done in the year 
1798. Shadrach Bond was elected to represent St. Clair county and 
John Edgar to represent Randolph county. The legislature met at 
Cincinnati on the 4th of February, 1799. There were twenty-two mem- 
bers in the lower house, representing eleven counties. William H. Har- 
rison who had succeeded Sargent as secretary was elected a delegate 
to congress. In the session of congress in the winter of 1799-1800, the 
proposition to divide the Northwest territory into two territories was 
referred to a committee of which Harrison was chairman. The report 
was favorably received by congress and on the 7th of May, 1800, an act 
was passed dividing the Northwest territory by a line running from the 
Ohio to Fort Recovery and thence to the line separating the territory 
from Canada. 

The western part was to be known as the Indiana territory and its 
government was to be of the first-class. Its capital was located at Vin- 
cennes and the governor was William Henry Harrison. The eastern 
division was called the Northwest territory, its capital was Chillicothe, 
and Governor St. Clair was still the chief executive. The east division 
was admitted as a state in 1802, February 19. Illinois, Indiana, Wis- 
consin, and Michigan now became the Indiana territory. 



The Northwest territory had grown in population since the institu- 
tion of the Ordinance of 1787. Governor St. Clair had done much for 
the territory and yet there were loud complaints about the inefficiency 
of the government. Courts were held infrequently and criminals were 
seldom punished. Great discontent existed because of the failure of 
the government to confirm the land claims of the people. St. Clair and 
the legislature often were bitterly opposed to each other. The Indians 
were numerous and insolent. The center of population had moved 
rapidly eastward and St. Glair's interests were carried eastward. 


In the congress of 1799-1800 a bill passed providing for the separ- 
ation of what is now the state of Ohio from the territory to the west. 
The western part was to be called the Indiana territory while the east- 
ern part retained the name of Northwest territory. On July 4, 1800, 
the Indiana territory came into existence. Gen. William Henry Harri- 
son, at that time a delegate in congress, was made governor of the new 
territory. The organization was that of a territory of the first class, and 
John Gibson was appointed secretary, the judges being William Clark. 
John Griffin, and Henry Vranderburg. The county organization of 
Knox, St. Clair, and Randolph remained quite similar to that in force 
before the division. 

The most important work which lay before Governor Harrison was 
the Indian problems. Governor Harrison was made superintendent of 
Indian affairs in addition to that of civil governor. By the treaty of 
Greenville in the summer of 1795, General Wayne acquired about 
18,000,000 acres of land in the Northwest territory for the United States. 
The treaty was agreed to by thirteen tribes who claimed lands in the 
eastern part of the Northwest territory. But now population was mov- 
ing west rapidly and the Indians in Indiana, Illinois, and the territory 
to the north were very restless and troublesome. It required the great- 
est diplomacy to handle these Indians. It has been said that Governor 
Harrison exhibited just such a remarkable aptitude in handling the In- 
dian question as was needful at that time. By the year 1805, Harri- 
son had made treaties with as many as eight or ten tribes in the west. 
The most noted were the treaties at Fort Wayne, Vincennes and St. 



Louis. By these treaties the United States came into possession of about 
30,000,000 acres of land in the western part of the old Northwest ter- 

It must not be thought that because the Indians had made treaties 
in which they ceded their lands to the general government that there- 
fore the Indian problems were all solved. Many of these Indians still 
lingered in the region of their old hunting grounds, and often it oc- 
curred that the whites and the red people were closely intermingled in 
many regions. 


It has already been shown that slavery had been introduced into the 
Illinois country by Philip Renault in 1721. In that year he brought 500 
slaves to the Louisiana territory, but probably all were not brought to 
the Illinois country. But a large number was brought to Kaskaskia 
and from that day forward for a century, slavery was a fixed institu- 
tion in Illinois. In 1763, France ceded the Illinois country to Great 
Britain, and while there was nothing said in the treaty about slaves, 
the French people could freely remove to other countries or stay as 
they liked, and if they stayed they were to retain all their rights and 
privileges which they held prior to the treaty. General Gage in a 
proclamation to the people of the Illinois country in 1763 stated among 
other things, "That those who choose to retain their lands and be- 
come subjects of his majesty, shall enjoy the same rights and privi- 
leges, the same security for their persons and effects and the liberty of 
trade, as the old subjects of the king." So there was slavery in Illinois 
as a British possession just as when it was French territory. In 1783 
Great Britain transferred this same territory to the United States. The 
United States in turn agreed to guarantee to the people security for 
persons and effects. Thus slavery was recognized. Again when Vir- 
ginia ceded her territory west of the Alleghany mountains she incor- 
porated in her deed of cession the following "Be it enacted That the 
French and Canadian inhabitants 'and other settlers of the Kaskaskia, 
St. Vincents, and the neighboring villages, who have professed them- 
selves citizens of Virginia shall have their possessions and titles con- 
firmed to them, and be protected in the enjoyment of their rights and 
liberties. ' ' This was in 1784. 

In the same year an ordinance was passed to govern the Northwest 
territory. An amendment was added the next year which said "That 
there shall be neither slavery nor involuntary servitude in any of the 
states" which shall be made of the Northwest territory. In the Ordi- 
nance of 1787, article the sixth provides "There shall be neither slav- 
ery nor involuntary servitude in the said territory otherwise than in the 
punishment of crimes, whereof the party shall have been duly con- 
victed." This clause was a source of fear to the inhabitants around 
Kaskaskia for they yet held many slaves. When Governor St. Glair 
arrived in Illinois country in 1790 he put an interpretation upon the 
sixth article which quieted the slave holder very much. He gave it as 
his interpretation that the sixth article meant that no more slaves 
could be brought into the territory, but that the slaves that were al- 
ready there were not to be disturbed. This was the construction 
put upon the article for the next several years. 


On January 12, 1796, a petition was sent to congress from Kaskas- 
kia, signed by John Edgar, William Morrison, William St. Clair, and 
John de Moulin for and on behalf of the inhabitants of the counties 
of St. Clair and Randolph praying that congress would annul the 
sixth article of the Ordinance of 1787. This article prohibited slav- 
ery in the territory. These petitions argued (1) That Virginia 
promised them through George Rogers Clark that they should be 
protected in all their rights and interests. (2) That while they now 
held slaves as in the days of the British supremacy, yet it was gen- 
erally agreed that children born of slave parents would be free under 
the ordinance. (3) That help was scarce and it was quite difficult to 
get laborers and mechanics. (4) Many excellent people coming from 
the old slave states go on into Spanish territory where slavery is per- 
mitted who else would locate in Illinois. 

This petition was forwarded to congress by Governor St. Clair. 
It was referred to a committee, who, through its chairman, Mr. 
Joshua Coit, reported that there was no evidence that Edgar and the 
other signers spoke for any one else than themselves, and that there 
was strenuous opposition to granting the petition coming from the 
eastern part of the territory. The petition was not granted. 

A second attempt was made to get the sixth article repealed or an- 
nulled in 1799. This was a petition of old soldiers to the legislature 
of Indiana for permission to bring their slaves with them into and 
upon the Virginia military reserve. The committee reported that the 
request "was incompatible with the articles of compact." The House 
e'ndorsed the report. 

In 1800 a petition was circulated about Kaskaskia, asking con- 
gress to annul the sixth article of the ordinance. It was signed by 
nearly three hundred names. It contained, in addition to a request 
for the abolition of the sixth article, a request that congress extin- 
guish the title of the Kaskaskia Indians to lands in the Illinois coun- 
try; and again, the granting of tracts of lands to those who would 
open roads through the country and maintain taverns on them for the 
convenience of travelers. This petition was presented on the 23d of 
January, 1801, but it was never acted upon. 

In 1802, while Governor Harrison was in Kaskaskia on business, 
he was strongly urged to call a convention in Vincennes to take un- 
der advisement the admission of slavery into the territory. Such a 
convention was called, elections were held December 11, and the dele- 
gates were to come to Vincennes the 20th of that month. Randolph 
sent three delegates, St. Clair three, Knox four, and Clark two 
twelve delegates in all. Randolph sent Pierre Menard, Robert Rey- 
nolds, and Robert Morrison. St. Clair sent Jean Francois Perry, 
Shadrach Bond, Sr., and John Mordeck. The convention was organ- 
ized and proceeded to the business in hand. The delegates formulated 
their requests along the following lines: (1) They contended that the 
sixth article had been the cause of slow growth in the Indiana terri- 
tory. (2) They asked only for a suspension of the article for ten 
years, after which it shall be in force. (3) Extinction of Kaskaskia 
Indian titles. (4) Pre-emption laws. (5) Encouragement of schools. 

(6) Granting large sections of land to those who would open roads. 

(7) The grant of the Saline Springs below the mouth of the Wabash 
to the Indiana territory. 


The petition was presented to congress and on the 2d of March, 
1803, the committee reported. They said: "The rapidly increasing 
population of the state of Ohio sufficiently evinces, in the opinion of 
your committee, that the labor of slaves is not necessary to promote 
the growth and settlement of colonies in that region." 

The refusal of congress to grant the request of the Vincennes con- 
vention roused the people to a determination to take the matter into 
their own hands. Although the Ordinance of 1787 provided that the 
governor and judges acting as a legislative body could adopt only 
such laws as were found upon the statute books of some one or more 
of the older states, the governor and judges acting as the law-making 
branch of the Indiana territory, on September 22, 1803, passed "A 
Law Concerning Servants." It provided that a person coming into 
the territory "under contract to serve another in any trade or occu- 
pation shall be compelled to perform such contract during the term 
thereof." The contract was assignable to any citizen of the terri- 
tory, if the servant consented. 

Intimately related with this subject of slavery in the Indiana ter- 
ritory, was the question of advancement to the second grade of terri- 
torial form of government. This indenture law of 1803, was not re- 
garded as a very safe guarantee to the southern slave holder, and few 
slaves were brought in. Notwithstanding this timidity on the part of 
the slave owner to migrate into the Northwest territory, there was a 
constant stream of people coming from the non-slaveholding states 
and also non-slaveholders from the slave states. There can be little 
doubt that Harrison and his friends were favorable to some plan by 
which slavery could be introduced, but unless something could be 
done soon there would be no chance as the whole territory would be 

The law of congress creating the Indiana territory, also provided 
that the government might at any time be changed to the second class 
when the majority of the people favored such a change. It was ar- 
gued that laws passed by a representative legislature would be re- 
garded with more consideration than those enacted by the governor 
and judges. Besides they would have a delegate in congress who 
while not being allowed to vote would yet be of great service to the 
people of the territory. The governor, therefore, issued a call for an 
election to test the wish of the people as to the change from the first 
grade of government to the second grade. The election was called 
August 4, 1804, to be held September 11; and the complaint was made 
that the time was too short for even all the voters to learn of the 
election. Certainly something worked against a full poll of the terri- 
tory as only four hundred votes were cast. The majority in favor of 
the change was one hundred and thirty-eight. 

The governor called an election for members of the legislature. 
The election was held on January 3, 1805, and on February 1, they 
convened at Vincennes. There were nine members of the lower 
house. Randolph sent Dr. George Fisher, while St. Clair sent Shad- 
rach Bond and "William Biggs. The council was selected in the usual 
way. Pierre Menard represented Randolph and John Hay was St. 
Clair 's representative in that body. The full legislature met July 
29, 1805. The first thing was the election of a representative or dele- 
gate to congress. Benjamin Parke was chosen. The next thing was 


to pass "An Act concerning the introduction of negroes and mulat- 
toes into this territory." This was an indenture law. It provided 
that any slave-holder might bring his slave into the territory, and 
enter into an agreement with the slave as to the length of time the 
slave was to work for the owner. If the slave refused to enter into 
a contract, the owner had sixty days in which to return him to a slave 
state. The "indenture" was acknowledged before the clerk of the 
court and placed on record. The slave was then known as an indented 
slave or an indented servant. If the slave-holder has slaves under 
fifteen years of age he may simply register them with the clerk of the 
court. The males must then serve the owner till they are thirty-five, 
and females till they are thirty-two. Children born of indented par- 
ents must serve their masters males till they are thirty-two, females 
till they are twenty-eight. 


From the day the Indiana territory was set off from what came to 
be the state of Ohio, the people of Illinois began to agitate the mat- 
ter of dividing the Indiana territory. The Illinois people complained 
that it was a great inconvenience to go so far to the seat of govern- 
ment. In a petition to congress the Illinois people complained that 
the road to Vincennes was a hundred and eighty miles through an 
uninhabited country which it was really dangerous to travel. 

Another argument was that the governor, William H. Harrison, 
appointed only friends to office and that all important places were 
filled with the governor's Indiana friends. 

A third argument in favor of the division was that the people in 
the Illinois region were favorable to slavery while the Indiana people 
were quite indifferent to the subject of introducing slavery. The Illi- 
nois people thought if they could get a separate territorial govern- 
ment, they could manage many problems peculiar to the Illinois peo- 
ple better than could the legislature as then composed. 

In the session of the legislature in Vincennes in 1808, a delegate 
to congress was to be elected. Mr. Jesse B. Thomas, the presiding 
officer, promised the Illinois members if they would vote for him as 
delegate to congress, he would secure the division. The bargain was 
made and carried out. 

February 3, 1809, congress passed an act separating the Indiana 
territory, by a line running north from Vincennes to Canada, into 
the two territories of Indiana and Illinois. 

ILLINOIS (1809-1812) 


The bill which passed congress and was signed by the President 
February 3, 1809, contained eight sections. The first "Be it enacted. 
. . . That, from and after the first day of March next, that part 
of the Indiana territory which lies west of the Wabash river, and a 
direct line drawn from Post Vincennes due north, to the territorial line 
between the United States and Canada, shall, for the purpose of tem- 
porary government, constitute a separate territory and be called Illi- 
nois." The second section provided for a government of the first class 
a governor, three judges, a secretary. The third provided for their 
appointment by the president. The fourth allowed the governor to 
call an election for the purpose of determining the desire of the people 
to enter the second grade of territorial government. And if favorable 
then he was to carry such desire into effect. Article five prohibited 
Indiana officials from exercising authority in Illinois. Article six 
provided that all suits and proceedings in process of being settled should 
be completed as if the division had not been made. Article seven guar- 
anteed to the Indiana government the current taxes due from lands 
lying in Illinois. Article eight fixed the seat of government at Kas- 
kaskia until such time as the legislature should locate it elsewhere. 

Nathaniel Pope was appointed secretary April 24. He was, for four 
or five years previous to his appointment, a resident of St. Genevieve 
but practiced law in Illinois. Ninian Edwards was appointed governor 
also on April 24, 1809. He was a judge of the court in Kentucky. The 
judges were Alexander Stuart, Obadiah Jones, and Jesse B. Thomas. 
Judge Stuart was transferred to Missouri, and Stanley Griswold filled 
the vacancy. 

Governor Edwards was a man of unusual parts. He had a collegiate 
training and was a man of wonderful resources. Henry Clay is said 
to have indorsed Judge Edwards for this place, saying, "I have no 
doubt that the whole representation from the state (Kentucky) would 
concur in ascribing to him every qualification for the office in question." 

Nathaniel Pope, who was at Kaskaskia much earlier than Governor 
Edwards, issued a proclamation establishing the two counties of Ran- 
dolph and St. Clair. Governor Edwards arrived in June and imme- 
diately called a legislative session of the governor and judges. The 
laws first provided were those previously in force in the Indiana terri- 
tory. The action of the secretary in appointing local officers was con- 



firmed. Among these territorial officers we may mention Robert Morri- 
son, adjutant general, Benjamin Stephenson, sheriff of Randolph, and 
John Hays, sheriff of St. Clair. Other minor positions were filled in 
the two counties. 

The government of the Illinois territory was now completely organ- 
ized and the people had realized what was for many years a buoyant 
hope. They said in favor of division, that it would increase immigration 
and bring prosperity to a lagging and unremuneratve industrial life. 
They argued that towns would spring up, farms would be opened, and 
that commerce would be greatly augmented. Their prophecy was ful- 

By a law of congress, passed March 26, 1804, there were established 
three land offices one at Kaskaskia, one at Vincennes, and one at De- 
troit. When the United States came into possession of the public do- 
main, there was no thought of attempting to dispose of it in smaller 
tracts than many thousands of acres. It was supposed that large com- 
panies and wealthy individuals would buy these large tracts and then 
go into the retail business. When Mr. Harrison was a delegate in con- 
gress, he got a bill through which reduced the tracts to one square mile 
640 acres. The price fixed was $2.00 per acre, one-fourth to be paid 
in cash and three-fourths on credit. Later the size of the tract was re- 
duced; so also was the price. The establishing of the land office at 
Kaskaskia in 1804 greatly increased the immigration to the Illinois 
country. So much so that the population of Illinois grew from 2,500 
in 1800 to 12,282 in 1810, by the census of those dates. 

When Governor Edwards came to take charge of affairs in the Illi- 
nois territory, or shortly thereafter, in addition to the number of settle- 
ments in the two counties of Randolph and St. Clair, there were settle- 
ments in the territory composing the counties of Jackson, Union, John- 
son, Massac, Pope, Gallatin, Monroe. In spite of the complaints made 
of the drawbacks of the undivided territory prior to 1809, there had 
been a great increase in population, in industries, in home-making, and 
in all the activities which were destined eventually 'to make Illinois a 
great state. 

But shortly after Governor Edwards arrived in the new territory, 
the peace and safety of the ten thousarid inhabitants were threatened. 
The Indians had, in recent years, ceded nearly all their claims to land 
in Indiana and Illinois, and they now became dissatisfied, and their 
minds were inflamed. Tecumseh and the Prophet were busy inciting 
the Indians to deeds of violence. Almost constant interviews were go- 
ing on between the Indians and those in authority in the two territories. 
The battle of Tippecanoe was fought on the 6th of November, 1811, 
and while Illinois had no military organization in the battle, yet there 
were individuals from around the salt works and Shawneetown who 
took part in the engagement. Col. Isaac White of Shawneetown, a 
lessee of the salt works, was a personal friend of Governor Harrison. 
He took part in the camapign and was killed in the battle above re- 
ferred to. 

Those who favored separation of Illinois from Indiana had argued 
that it would greatly increase the immigration into the territory and 
in other ways greatly benefit the territory. These prophecies were ful- 
filled. The land offices spoken of above greatly stimulated the sale of 
land to actual settlers. 


When Governor Edwards had gotten fairly settled in his official 
home as governor of the new territory, the citizens of Kaskaskia and 
Randolph counties presented him with a memorial pledging him their 
hearty support in the discharge of his official duties. In this address 
they call particular attention to the hard fight they had gone through 
to get the territory separated from Indiana. They mention the hang- 
ing of Jesse B. Thomas in effigy at Vincennes in condemnation of his 
efforts to secure the separation, and also the assassination of an advo- 
cate of separation in Kaskaskia. Governor Edwards says when he came 
to the territory he found it divided into violent political factions. He 
endeavored, and really succeeded, in holding himself aloof from these 
ruinous factional quarrels. 

But Governor Edwards had harely gotten the civil and military 
organizations well established before there began a series of difficulties 
with the Indians which were a source of great anxiety not only to the 
governor, but to the whole people. Several massacres occurred in the 
region of the Illinois river, and there followed long interviews and 
exchanges of linguistic courtesies. The Indians were greatly disturbed 
everywhere in the west. The battle of Tippecanoe was fought in 1811, 
and in 1812 war broke out between the United States and England. 
The Indians throughout the west and particularly around the lakes 
sided with the British. 

WAR OF 1812 

We may state here that while the territory was absorbed in the War 
of 1812, the people voted to pass from a territory of the first class to one 
of the second class. 

Governor Edwards was active in his efforts to provide defenses for 
the American settlements in the Illinois territory. A line of block- 
houses was built reaching from west to east. Unfortunately it is difficult 
to locate these block-houses and forts accurately. In some counties either 
by tradition or by records some of them can be located. They were some- 
times quite extensive affairs. The block-house was often enclosed by a 
stockade large enough to shelter the stock of the neighborhood. The 
block-house was often nothing more than a strong log house with port- 
holes. From the best information now available block-houses, forts, or 
stockades were erected at or near the following places : One at Carlyle ; 
one near Aviston in Clinton county called Journey '& or Tourney 's fort ; 
two in the western part of Bond county, called Hill's fort and Jones' 
fort; one at the edge of Looking Glass Prairie on Silver creek in St. 
Clair county, called Chamber's fort; two, Middleton's and Going's, on 
the Kaskaskia; Nat Hill's fort on Doza creek; Jordan's block-house in 
the northwestern corner of Franklin county ; one southwest of Marion, 
Williamson county ; one southeast of Marion on Saline river ; Stone Fort 
on the Saline river; one at the mouth of the Illinois river on the west 
side ; one nineteen miles above the mouth of the Illinois ; and lastly Fort 
Russell which was probably the most complete and pretentious fortifi- 
cation in the state in this war. It was located about one and a half 
miles northwest of Edwardsville. It included a substantial palisade with 
buildings for supplies, headquarters, and barracks for soldiers. Some 
cannon were brought there from old Fort Chartres. This fort was 
named after Col. William Russell of Kentucky who had command of 
the rangers in the War of 1812. 



As soon as war was declared by the United States, the Indians in 
northern and central Illinois became exceedingly warlike. Governor 
Edwards had taken the precaution to have his militia well organized. 
Some 500 of them were called into service. Colonel Russell was sent 
into Illinois to organize the United States rangers. Colonel Russell was 
a Kentuckian. Several companies of the regiment of rangers were en- 
listed from Southern Illinois. Two expeditions were made from Fort 
Russell northward into the central part of the state. One in 1812 and 
one in 1813. Both had Peoria as their destination. But no real battles 
were fought with the Indians. The first expedition captured several 
families of French who lived about Peoria who were thought to be sym- 
pathetic with the Indians. They were brought to a point just below 
Alton and there set ashore without food or shelter, and after much suf- 


fering they reached St. Louis. The "Life and Times of Ninian Ed- 
wards" says they were landed in St. Louis. 

The most important event that occurred in Illinois during the War 
of 1812, was the Fort Dearborn massacre. Fort Dearborn was a stock- 
ade and block-house fort just at the mouth of the Chicago river. It was 
occupied by government troops as early as 1803. In 1812 there were 
probably a half dozen houses in Chicago outside of the buildings about 
the stockade. The officer in command was Capt. Nathan Heald. Other 
officers were Lieutenant Liani F. Helm, Ensign George Ronan, Surgeon 
Isaac Van Voorhis. John Kinzie was the principal Indian trader. 
There were seventy-four soldiers in the garrison. By the middle of the 
summer of 1812, the Indians became very demonstrative and two mur- 
ders were committed, and other violent conduct engaged in. Captain 
Heald had received orders to evacuate the fort and move his command 
to Fort Wayne. He was advised by friendly Indians to prepare for a 
siege, or 'to leave the fort at once. He did not take this advice but noti- 
fied the Indians that he expected to abandon the fort and that he would 
distribute the public property among them. This action on the part of 
the commanding officer, it was supposed, would greatly please the In- 
dians and this would guarantee his safe passage to Fort Wayne. This 









Vol. J 8 



decision on the part of Captain Heald was strongly opposed by the of- 
ficers and Kinzie, the trader. As soon as this word was circulated among 
the Indians, they became insolent and treated the authority of Captain 
Heald with contempt. By the 12th of August the Indians had gathered 
in large numbers and a council was held in which Captain Heald told 
the Indians his plans. He proposed to distribute among them all his 
public stores, and in return they were to furnish him an escort of 500 
warriors to Port Wayne. There immediately grew up in the fort the 
greatest fear for the safety of the little garrison. Fear grew to despair, 
and open rebellion against the order of the commander was imminent. 
Captain Heald decided that he would destroy the guns, ammunition, 
and liquor in the fort, as these in the hands of the Indians would only 
be the means of death to the garrison. 


On the 13th of August the goods were distributed among the Indians. 
They soon discovered that there were certain things which they expected 
that they did not receive, and they began to show their dissatisfaction 
and disappointment. On the 14th Captain Wells, a brother to Mrs. 
Heald, arrived with some friendly Miamis. He had been brought up 
among the Indians and he knew from what he saw and heard that "all 
was not well." 

On the morning of the 15th the sun rose gloriously over Lake Michi- 
gan. By nine o'clock the little army was ready to depart for Fort 
Wayne. Each soldier was given twenty-five rounds of ammunition. 
The baggage wagons, the ambulance and the little army proceeded on 
their fatal journey. 

When a mile and a half from the fort they discovered Indians hidden 
behind sand hills, ready to attack. The soldiers were fired upon and 
returned the fire. The conflict then became general and lasted for some 
time. Finally after nearly half of the soldiers had been killed, the 
remnant surrendered. In the agreement to surrender no stipulation was 
made as to the treatment of the wounded, and it is said by eye witnesses 
that their treatment by the infuriated Indians beggars all description. 
Twenty-six regulars, twelve militia, two women and twelve children were 


left dead on the field of conflict. The prisoners were scattered here and 
there but were finally ransomed. 

The fort was destroyed by the Indians, but was rebuilt and occupied 
in 1816 or 1817. It was finally abandoned in 1836. 


It remains to record a final campaign conducted by Major Zachary 
Taylor, later president of the United States, supported by Illinois troops. 
It was very necessary to have a strong fort and garrison somewhere in 
the region of Rock Island, and the expedition was intended to establish 
such fort and garrison. The expedition which moved up the Mississippi 
consisted of 40 United States regulars and 294 Illinois troops under 
the command of Capt. Samuel Whiteside and Nelson Rector, two noted 
Indian fighters the whole under command of Colonel Taylor. The 
expedition started August 23, 1814. It moved up the Mississippi and 
above Rock Island encountered strong opposition from the Indians, and 
learning that British troops were in the vicinity with artillery, the boats 
descended the river. The British had been able to bring their cannon to 
the banks of the river in time to bombard the retreating vessels. It was 
remarkable that the boats were not sunk and all on board killed. Fort 
Edwards was built in the present county of Hancock about where War- 
saw is, and after holding this point a short time the position was evacu- 
ated and the troops returned to St. Louis. 

Among the Illinois officers who won distinction in the War of 1812 
were William and Samuel Whitesides, cousins, who lived in the Ameri- 
can Bottoms, at a place called Whitesides Station, a family fort, prob- 
ably of the block-house form. These two pioneers acted as captains in 
Russell's rangers and became very noted because of their activity in 
the defense of the American families. James B. Moore whose father 
was one of the spies sent by General Clark to Kaskaskia in the year 1777, 
was a captain in Russell 's rangers. Jacob Short who settled near Belle- 
fontaine in 1796 was captain of a ranger company. Others who won 
distinction were John Moredock ; William and Nathan Boone, the former 
of whom was paymaster for a portion of the rangers. He paid them in 
rix-dollars, a foreign silver coin of the value of 60 cents to one dollar and 
fifteen cents. William, Stephen, Charles, Elias, and Nelson Rector were 
all prominent officers in the war. Nathaniel Journey was an officer part 
of the time, but was engaged chiefly in guarding settlers in the vicin- 
ity of Carlyle. Willis Hargrave was captain of a company of independ- 
ent rangers near the Wabash. Later he was a major in the "Spy Bat- 
talion" in the Black Hawk war. Captain Samuel Judy was also an ac- 
tive man in the war. In 1816 at St. Louis, Gov. Ninian Edwards of 
Illinois territory, Gov. William Clark of Missouri territory, and Auguste 
Choteau of St. Louis, consummated a treaty with the chiefs and war- 
riors of the Ottawas, the Chippewas, and the Pottawatomies in which 
treaty the tribes ceded all lands south of a line running east and west 
through the south end of Lake Michigan. They also ceded a strip of 
land ten miles in width from the mouth of the Fox river to the lake at 
Chicago. This strip of land was acquired by the government with the 
expectation that at an early date the government would build a canal 
from Lake Michigan to the head of navigation on the Illinois river. 
This expectation was realized when the Illinois and Michigan canal was 


A study of the roster of officers and men who took part in this bor- 
der warfare, reveals a number of names prominent in the history of the 
state. Prom the beginning to the end of this struggle there were prob- 
ably two or three thousand citizens enrolled in the service. Scores of 
lives were lost most of them near their houses. It remains to tell a 
story of horrid butchery which occurred on Wood river in Madison 
county, on the 10th day of July, 1814. Mrs. Rachel Reagan and two 
children went to spend the day at the house of William Moore. In the 
afternoon on her way home, she came by another neighbor's house, Cap- 
tain Abel Moore. From the latter place she was accompanied by four 
small children, two of William Moore 's and two of Abel Moore 's. When 
the little company of seven were between the homes of Abel Moore and 
Mrs. Reagan, they were attacked by savages and six killed outright ; the 
seventh, a little boy, was found alive but died from the effects of his 
wounds. William Moore returned home from Fort Butler (near St. 
Jacobs) and finding the children absent went in search of them. They 
were found but the Indians were still lurking in the immediate locality 
and the bodies were not recovered till the next morning. The two forts, 
Russell and Butler, were notified and a pursuing party organized. The 
savages were followed to a point north of Jacksonville and one of them 
killed, the rest escaped. More than fifty non-combatants lost their lives 
in Illinois during this war. 


The fourth section of the act of congress of February, 1809, dividing 
the Indiana territory, provided that so much of the ordinance of 1787 
as applied to the organization of a legislative assembly, should apply 
to the government of the Illinois territory whenever satisfactory evi- 
dence should be given to the governor that it was the wish of the ma- 
jority of the freeholders, though there might not be 5,000 legal voters 
as provided in the ordinance. 

By 1812 considerable interest was manifested relative to the change 
from the first to a second grade territory. 

The Ordinance of 1787 permitted only freeholders to vote, and so 
when Governor Edwards called the election in the spring of 1812, to 
determine the wish of the voters on the proposed change to a territory 
of the second grade, there were fewer than 400 votes cast, but they 
were nearly unanimous in favor of the proposed change. In May fol- 
lowing this vote, congress enfranchised all white male persons over 
twenty-one years of age, and advanced Illinois to the second grade. 

On September 16, 1812, the governor and judges acting as a legis- 
lative body created three new counties. The two old ones were St. 
Clair and Randolph, and the three new ones were Madison, Gallatin, 
and Johnson. On the same day an election was ordered in these five 
counties for five members of the legislative council, and for seven mem- 
bers of the house of representatives, and for a delegate in congress. 
The election was held October 8, 9, 10. 

Those chosen were, for the lower house, from Madison, Wm. Jones; 
St. Clair, Jacob Short and Joshua Oglesby; Randolph, George Fisher; 
Johnson, John Grammar; Gallatin, Philip Trammel and Alexander 
Wilson. Those chosen for the council were, from Madison, Samuel 
Judy; St. Clair, Wm. Biggs ; Randolph, Pierre Menard; Johnson, 
Thomas Ferguson ; Gallatin, Benjamin Talbot. 


This general assembly met at Kaskaskia November 25, and proceeded 
to organize by choosing Pierre Menard president of the council and 
George Fisher speaker of the house. Reynolds says the whole of the 
assembly boarded at one house and slept in one room. The work before 
this first session was to re-enact the laws for the territory which served 
while the territory was of the first class, to adopt military measures 
for the defense of the people against the Indians, and to provide rev- 
enue for the maintenance of the territorial government. The legislature 
was in session from the 25th of November to the 26th of December, fol- 
lowing. This legislature elected Shadrach Bond as delegate to con- 
gress. He took his seat in the fall of 1812. During his term of office 
in congress Bond secured the passage of the first pre-emption law of 
Illinois. This law provided that a man who settled upon a piece of 
land and made an improvement while it was still government land, 
should have the right to buy the tract so improved in preference to 
any one else. This law prevented persons from buying lands which 
some one else had improved to the detriment of the one who made the 

The laws which were in force in Illinois as a first class territory 
were all taken from the laws of some older state. Those passed by the 
legislature while the territory was in the second grade were usually 
of the same nature as those in use under the first grade. It will be 
very interesting as well as quite instructive for us to know some of 
these laws. A few are given in substance : 

For burglary, whipping on the bare back, thirty-nine stripes. Lar- 
ceny, thirty-one stripes. Horse-stealing, fifty lashes, and one hundred 
for second offense. Hog-stealing, twenty-five to thirty-nine lashes. Big- 
amy, one hundred to three hundred stripes. Children or servants who 
were disobedient could be whipped ten lashes by consent of the justice. 
If a man were fined and could not pay, his time could be sold by the 
sheriff. Standing in the pillory was a common mode of punishment. 
Branding was authorized in extreme cases. There were five crimes for 
which the penalty was death by hanging they were treason, murder, 
arson, rape, and for second conviction of horse-stealing. "For revel- 
ing, quarreling, fighting, _ profanely cursing, disorderly behavior at 
divine worship, and hunting on the Sabbath, penalties by fines were 

The laws providing for the collection of debts were all quite favor- 
able to the creditor. No property, real or personal, was exempt from 
judgment and execution ; and if the property did not satisfy a debt, 
the debtor could be cast into prison. 

By an act of December 24, 1814, entitled "To promote retaliation 
upon hostile Indians" we see to what ends the settlers were driven to 
defend themselves against the savage redmen. It was enacted that 
(abridged) : 

1. When the Indians make incursions into any locality and kill or 
commit other depredations, any citizen shall be paid $50.00 for killing 
or capturing such Indian. If killed or captured by a ranger, $25.00. 

2. Any person receiving permission from a commanding officer to 
go into the Indian territory and who shall kill an Indian, shall be paid 

3. Rangers in parties of fifteen who make incursions into the coun- 
try of hostile Indians shall receive $50.00 for each Indian killed, or 
squaw taken prisoner. 


Shadrach Bond was the first delegate from Illinois to sit in congress. 
He was elected in 1812. During his term as delegate in congress he 
secured the enactment of the first pre-emption law ever put upon the 
statute books in the United States. This law will be better appreciated 
when we understand some of the practices of frontier life. 

The wave of immigration often traveled westward faster than the 
surveyors did. In such cases the settler never knew just where his land 
would fall when the region was platted by the surveyor. And again, 
after the surveyor had done his work it often happened that the sur- 
veyed land was not placed on the market for a number of years. The 
settler usually selected his lands and made improvements with the ex- 
pectation that he would buy the land when it came on the market. 
Unprincipled men would watch and would often step in ahead of the 
settler at the land office and buy the improved land at government 
prices. This often resulted in violence and bloodshed. 

Bond's pre-emption law recognized the settler's equity in the im- 
provements, and prevented anyone else from buying the land without 
the consent of the one who had improved it. This was legislating in 
the interest of the pioneers who had borne the burden and the heat 
of the day. 

There was a rapid increase in the population of the territory of 
Illinois from the day it became a territory of the second grade. New 
counties were added to the five previously named. The new ones were 
Edwards and White in 1815; Monroe, Crawford, Jackson, Pope, 
Bond, in 1816; Union, Franklin, and Washington in 1818. 

It should be kept in mind that some of these counties were organized 
with very few people. However, the population was greatly multiply- 
ing, for by 1818 there were nearly 40,000 people within the state. 

The territorial legislature of Illinois held three general sessions 
one in 1812, one in 1814, and one in 1816. This last legislature held 
two sessions on account of the extra work in admitting Illinois as a state. 

Our neighboring states of Ohio, Kentucky, Tennessee, and Missouri 
had each a system of banking which furnished an abundance of money ; 
indeed very much of this money found its way into Illinois. The legis- 
lature of 1816 passed a law chartering banks at Shawneetown, Kaskas- 
kia and Edwardsville. We shall speak of these more fully in a later 

There was a charter issued by the legislature of 1817-18 incorporat- 
ing the city and bank of Cairo. At this time there was nothing in the 
nature of a town or city where Cairo now stands. The lower part of 
the peninsula was claimed by several brothers by the name of Bird. 
The company called the City and Bank of Cairo consisted of John G. 
Comyges, Thos. H. Harris, Charles Slade, Shadrach Bond, Michael 
Jones, Warren Brown, Edward Humphries, and Charles W. Hunter. 

They proposed to sell 2,000 Cairo city lots at $150 each, put $50 
out of each sale into levees, and a hundred dollars into a bank. The 
bank was opened in Kaskaskia in a brick building adjacent to the land 
office. The bill seen on a preceding page bears date January 1, 1841. 
This bill was issued to J. Hall and was signed by T. Jones, cashier, and 
D. J. Baker, president. David Jewett Baker was a prominent lawyer 
in Illinois from 1819 till his death in 1869. The charter of this bank 
was for twenty years, but in 1837 its charter was extended another 
twenty years, but in 1843 it was annulled and the bank closed its doors 
and wound up its business. 



The year 1818 was a notable one in the history of Illinois. In this 
year was realized an event which many had looked forward to with 
great interest ; this was the year when the state became of age. Its his- 
tory reached back to the discovery by Marquette and Joliet, nearly a 
hundred and fifty years. It had actually been settled by whites for 
one hundred and eighteen years. 

Its people had lived successively under three governments the 
French, the English, and the American. Immigration had reached it 
from three sources the north, the south, and the east. Each of the 
three quarters brought its own peculiar people. No other district of 
equal area created such widespread interest in Europe as the Illinois 
country. The fame of its rich soil, its noble rivers, its wide stretching 
lake, its abundance of wild game, its famous wealth of mines, and its 
geographical situation was spread abroad by every traveller who 
chanced to traverse its boundless prairies or to thread its silvery streams. 

For a century after the planting of the first permanent settlement 
the growth of institutional life was very slow. The people for a large 
part, were unambitious, thriftless, and lived without purpose. Those 
who were responsible for the continuous ongoing of the settlements 
looked upon them as a means only to an end, which end was not within 
the grasp of those who were building more wisely than they knew. 
The French settlements on the Mississippi could never have lived 
through the century following their founding, had it not been for the 
strong arm of the royal government, and the equally strong support 
of the church. How different from the Anglo-Saxon settlements on the 
Atlantic coast which prospered in spite of both royalty and ecclesias- 

At the beginning of the nineteenth century there were probably less 
than 3,000 souls in the territory. They were distributed chiefly along 
the Mississippi, a few being on the Ohio, and a few along the Wabash 

The chief lines of industrial life were farming, commerce, trading, 
manufacturing, lumbering, fishing, etc. Wheat was raised in large 
quantities in the American bottom. The harvesting was done with the 
old fashioned sickle. Reynolds says there were no cradles in those days. 
The wheat was threshed with flail or tramped out by means of horses^ 
The wheat was ground at water mills or horse mills. 

In 1806 the nearest gristmill to the people south and east of Kas- 
kaskia was John Edgar's mill near Kaskaskia. Corn was raised but 
not so extensively as wheat. Hogs were fattened by allowing them to 
feed upon the mast which in that early day was abundant. The corn 
was used to make "lye hominy" and "samp;" whiskey was distilled 
by some of the settlers who had come from Tennessee, Kentucky, or 
the mountainous districts of Virginia. Considerable whiskey was 
drunk, especially on public days. Fruits were plentifully grown. The 
French villagers usually had a few fruit trees in their back yards. Flax 
was grown in considerable quantities. Reynolds says that half of the 
population made their living by the chase, as coureiirs de bois, or keel 
boating. The lead mines in the northwest part of the state and in 
southwestern Wisconsin furnished an excellent market for the surplus 
food products of the Illinois settlements. The transportation of this 
provision to the mines and the return with lead down the river, gave 
work for a large contingent of river men. 



Lumber was not extensively used. But there were a few mills for 
making lumber. The whip saw was the chief dependence for sawing 
boards, but in about 1800 a water mill for both sawing and grinding 
was erected on Horse creek. The lumber was used quite largely in 
building flat boats for the river trade. Some of it, of course, was used 
in the construction of houses. 

Among the limited kinds of manufacturing, the making of flour 
was perhaps the most general. This flour was marketed in St. Louis, 
in the lead mines, in New Orleans, in the eastern states, and some of it 
is said to have been shipped to Europe. Salt was made at the salines, 
in what is now Gallatin county, also in Jackson county on Big Muddy, 
in Monroe, seven or eight miles west of Waterloo, in Bond, and possibly 
in other localities. There were few tanneries, though Conrad Will had 


one in Jackson county as early as 1814. It is said that the French 
women did not take kindly to such work as making butter, spinning, 
weaving, etc. Blacksmiths were scarce, and so the wagons of those 
early days were made chiefly of wood, as were also the plows. 

Schools were scarce. It is said that the Jesuits had a school in 
Kaskaskia in the middle of the eighteenth century. Samuel J. Seely 
is said to have been the first American school teacher in Illinois. He 
taught school in New Design. He came there as early as 1783 and 
taught in an abandoned squatter's cabin. The school was continued 
the next year by Francis Clark, and he was followed by an Irishman 
named Halfpenny. Reynolds calls Halfpenny the "School Master Gen- 
eral of Illinois," because he taught in so many localities. He built a 
water mill on Fountaine creek, not far from Waterloo, in 1795. Mon- 
roe had schools as early as 1784. Randolph had a school as early as 
1790. The teacher was John Doyle, a soldier with Colonel Clark in 
1778. A Mr. Davis, an old sailor, taught in the fort in Baldwin pre- 
cinct in 1816. John Bradsbury, "faithful but not learned," taught a 
school in Madison county near Collinsville as early as 1804. John At- 
water opened a school near Edwardsville in 1807. St. Clair county 


had for a pioneer teacher John Messenger, who was also a surveyor. 
Schools were opened at Turkey Hill in 1808 by John Bradley, and at 
Shiloh in 1811. 

The school furniture was as primitive as the school house. The 
seats were made of puncheons, with four legs set into auger holes. 
Often the seat was too high for the little fellows; and they could 
amuse themselves by swinging their legs vigorously. There were no 
desks except for the older pupils who took writing lessons. Stout 
pegs of sufficient length were set into auger holes in the wall, so as to 
slope downward ; on these supports, at convenient height, was fastened 
the smoothed puncheon. Thus the writing pupils sat or stood facing 
the wall. A pail or a "piggin" of water with a gourd instead of 
tumbler or mug, was an essential part of the furniture. It was a re- 
ward of merit to be allowed to go to the spring or well to fill the 
bucket or piggin. 

In an earlier day the Catholic church was the only religious organ- 
ization. At Kaskaskia was the mission of the Immaculate Conception. 
This mission is said to have been founded by Father Marquette as 
early as 1675 near the present town of Utica. It was moved to Kas- 
kaskia about 1700. About the same time a mission was founded at 
Cahokia, and later one at Fort Chartres. The mission of those early 
days served two general purposes one to serve as a mile stone in the 
wanderings of the voyagers and explorers, and as place for spiritual 
invigoration ; the other as a center around which the natives could 
be gathered for religious instruction. The value of these early mis- 
sionary efforts from the point of view of the conversion of the In- 
dians has probably been overestimated. Marquette reports only the 
baptizing of a dying infant at the end of three days' hard preaching 
among the Kaskaskia Indians. Father Marest says, "Nothing is more 
difficult than the conversion of these Indians. Religion among them 
does not take deep root, as should be desired, and there are but few 
souls who from time to time give themselves truly to God." Father 
Membre says, "With regard to conversions I cannot rely upon any. 
We baptized some dying children and two or three dying persons who 
manifested proper dispositions." Father Vivier, a Jesuit, said, "The 
only good they (the missionaries) can do them is the administration 
of baptism to children who are at the point of death," etc. But it 
must not be thought that the work of the Catholic church in the Illi- 
nois country was wholly fruitless. The godly life of the priests ex- 
erted its influence upon the savages whenever the two came in con- 

There were three leading Protestant churches represented in Illi- 
nois prior to the admission of the state into the union. These were 
in order of their coming, the Baptists, the Methodists, and the Presby- 
terians. The Baptists were represented in Illinois as early as 1787. In 
that year the Rev. James Smith, from Lincoln county, Kentucky, came 
to the New Design settlement and enffasred in evangelistic work. Smith 
was followed by the Rev. John K. Simpson and his son, they by Rev. 
Smith, who had previously returned to Kentucky. Rev. Josiah Dodge 
came from Kentucky to visit his brother, who lived at St. Genevieve, 
and visited the settlers about New Design. Reynolds says that in 
February, 1794, they cut the ice in Fountaine creek, and Rev. Dodge 
baptized James Lemen, Sr., his wife, John Gibbons and Isaac Enochs, 
and that these were the first people baptized in the territory. The 


Rev. David Badgley organized the first Baptist church in the Illinois 
territory in the summer of 1796. The greatest representative of the 
Baptist faith in the early days of the state was Rev. John M. Peck, 
but he did not arrive till 1817 and we shall speak of his labors later. 

The Methodists came into the territory as early as 1793. They 
were first represented by the Rev. Joseph Lillard, who came from 
Kentucky. He was a circuit rider in that state. He organized a 
church at New Design and appointed Joseph Ogle as class leader. 
Ogle had been converted by a Baptist preacher in Kentucky, and had 
attached himself to the Methodists. The Rev. Hosea Riggs came iu 
1796 and he was followed by Benjamin Young who was the first cir- 
cuit rider with a regular appointment in Illinois. Probably the most 
noted of the early preachers was the Rev. Jesse Walker, who came 
from Kentucky by appointment from the "Western Conference." 
The Western Conference, held in 1806, appointed Jesse Walker cir- 
cuit rider for the Illinois circuit which at that time was one of eight 
circuits of the Cumberland district. The Rev. William McKendree, 
afterwards Bishop McKendree, was the presiding elder of the Cum- 
berland district, and so earnest was he that Jesse Walker should get 
started that he came with him to the Illinois territory. They swam 
their horses across seven different streams, camped out at night and 
cooked their own meals. They finally arrived at the Turkey Hill 
settlement near the present city of Belleville. The winter of 1806-7 
the Rev. Walker preached in the homes of the people in and around 
New Design. In the summer of 1808 he held a campmeeting which 
was doubtless the first effort of the kind ever made in the state. 
Walker soon had two hundred and eighteen members in the Illinois 
circuit. He afterwards established a church in St. Louis. 

The first Presbyterian preacher to visit the Illinois territory was 
the Rev. John Evans Finley. He reached Kaskaskia in a keel boat 
from Pittsburg in 1797. "He preached and catechised, also baptized 
several of the redmen." Although the Rev. Mr. Finley fully intended 
to settle in the Illinois territory, he and his companions decided to 
leave when they learned they would be obliged to do military duty. 
Two licentiates of the Presbyterian church, F. Schermerhorn and 
Samuel J. Mills, were sent by the New England missionary societies 
into several of the western states in the year 1812. They made care- 
ful observations, preached, and made frequent reports of their work. 
''In the Illinois territory containing more than twelve thousand 
people, there is no Presbyterian or Congregational minister. There 
are a number of good people in the territory who would be glad to 
have such ministers among them." These two missionaries stayed but 
a short time in Illinois and went on their way, reaching Nashville the 
winter of 1812-13. The same Mr. Mills came again in 1814. On this 
trip he says, "This territory is deplorably destitute of bibles. In 
Kaskaskia, a place of eighty or one hundred families there are, it is 
thought, not more than four or five. We did not find any place in the 
territory where a copy of the scripture could be obtained. ' ' On Janu- 
ary 20, 1815, he writes " Shawneetown on the Ohio has about one 
hundred houses. Six miles from Kaskaskia there is an Associate Re- 
formed congregation of forty families." He says he heard of no 
other Protestant preachers or members in all the region around Kas- 
kaskia. But a Methodist preacher from near New Design told him 
that formerly there were several Presbyterians in that locality but 


they had now all joined either the Methodists or the Baptists. No 
Presbyterian preacher was settled or preached for any length of time 
before the coming of the Rev. James McGready in 1816. He organized 
the Sharon church, in what is now White county, in September of 
that year. To the Associate Reformed church mentioned above, Rey- 
nolds says there came in 1817 a reverend gentleman by the name of 
Samuel Wylie. 

He had a very prosperous congregation of Covenanters in Ran- 
dolph county. He and his people became very noted throughout 
Southern Illinois. 

The social life of Illinois prior to 1818 was certainly not of a very 
high order. We do not mean there were no good people and that 
there were not those of culture and refinement, for indeed many of the 
people who became permanent settlers were from localities in the older 
states where the agencies of culture, learning, and religion were 
abundant. However, in any newly settled region there is always 
found a very rough class of people, and while not necessarily in the 
majority in numbers, to the casual observer they stand out promi- 
nently and give character to the community at large. 

In dress the early pioneers were content with the homemade prod- 
uct. The men often wearing breeches and shirt of the tanned hide of 
wild animals, and the cap of fox hide or of raccoon skin. This gave 
them a very rough appearance. Their homes were very crude and 
not always comfortable. The household utensils were such as could 
be manufactured by each head of the family. There were no stoves, 
cooking being done on the fire-place hearth. 

Swapping work was quite common. The particular kinds of work 
referred to were wood chopping, corn gathering, harvesting, house- 
raising, and road-making. Some of these gatherings were very en- 
joyable to the pioneers for they would often spread their meals upon 
the ground and gather about in modern picnic style. Dancing was 
a very common amusement and since there were very few preachers, 
there were few others to object. The French settlers especially were 
fond of dancing. Horse-racing was another very common recreation. 
The horse-races usually came off on Saturdays or on public days. 
Race tracks were common features of many localities. At these races 
other amusements were indulged in ; fighting was no unusual thing. 
The "bully" was a man of notoriety. Swearing of the hardest sort 
was heard and while there were laws against it, still the people in- 
dulged. "Swearing by the name of God, Christ Jesus, or the Holy 
Ghost," as well as Sabbath breaking, was finable from fifty cents to 
two dollars. 

Perhaps one of the most characteristic customs, and one that still 
lingers in many localities, was the "shooting match." A farmer's 
wife who had been quite lucky in raising turkeys, would dispose of 
them in the fall by means of the shooting match. If the turkey was to 
bring one dollar then ten privileges to shoot must be bought at ten 
cents each. When the necessary number of chances was taken then 
a mark was put up at a certain distance and the contest began. The 
marksman who made the best shot got the turkey. Among these 
frontiersmen "taking a rest" was a confession of lack of skill. In 
some of the states south of the Potomac it was no uncommon thing to 
sell furniture in this way; even the beef carcass was disposed of by 
the test of marksmanship. 



Illinois upon its separation from Indiana in 1809 became a territory 
of the first class with a governor, secretary, three judges, and such minor 
officers as were needed. In the spring of 1812 by a vote of the free- 
holders the territory became one of the second class. This gave the peo- 
ple, in addition to the governor, secretary, and the three judges, which 
were all appointed by the president, a legislative body consisting of an 
upper and a lower house. The territory was also entitled to a delegate 
in congress who would be entitled to all the privileges of that body ex- 
cept that of voting. 


Elections were held in the five counties then organized namely : 
Randolph, St. Glair, Madison, Johnson, and Gallatin, for members of 
the two branches of the territorial legislature. The following persons 
were elected to the upper house from the counties respectively- Pierre 
Menard, William Biggs, Samuel Judy, Thomas Ferguson, and Benja- 
min Talbot. The members of the lower house were : from Randolph, 
George Fisher; from St. Clair, Joshua Oglesby and Jacob Short; from 
Madison, William Jones ; from Johnson, John Grammar ; and from Gal- 
latin, Phillip Trammel and Alexander Wilson. There was not a lawyer 
in either house. The delegate selected to represent the territory in con- 
gress was Shadrach Bond. 

Under the second class form of government the legislature met bi- 
ennially. In the summer of 1814 Col. Benjamin Stephenson was elected 
delegate in congress, and in 1816 Nathaniel Pope, who served till the 
admission of the state in 1818. Two new counties were added in 1815, 
White and Edwards, making seven in all. In 1816 four more were 
added Monroe, Jackson, Pope and Crawford. In 1817 Bond was 
added, and in 1818 Franklin, Union, and Washington were added, these 
making fifteen counties at the admission of the state in 1818. 


A bit of interesting legislation occurred in the session of 1816. It 
will be remembered that the charter to the first United States bank, 
which was passed in 1791, expired in 1811 and failed of renewal. Al- 




most immediately the states began to charter state banks. Of course 
there were state banks before this time, but now there seemed an in- 
creased demand for such banks. Ohio and Kentucky were quite active 
about this time in chartering state banks. Illinois had just passed 
through four years of strain in the Indian wars. Considerable money 
had been distributed among those who had served in the war, but it was 
rapidly disappearing, and so the demand for banks of issue was very 

Probably the first bank in Illinois was conducted by John Marshall 
who resided in Shawneetown. He settled there in 1804 and was a suc- 
cessful merchant. It is said he rode to Philadelphia on horse back to 
order his stock of goods taking the silver in a sack. The goods were 
freighted over to Pittsburg in wagons and then floated down the Ohio to 
Shawneetown. He early built a two story brick residence just on the 

^BANif AS EARLY AS 1813 

bank of the river, and in one room of the first floor he conducted his 
bank as early as 1812 or 1813. The land office was located in Shawnee- 
town in 1812 and no doubt there was need of a banking house for that 

In 1816 when the territorial legislature met at Kaskaskia there was 
a very strong desire for a banking system. A bill was introduced and 
passed creating by charter the "Bank of Illinois" located at Shawnee- 
town. At another session of the same body held in the fall of 1817, 
banks were authorized in Edwardsville and Kaskaskia. These were 
not state banks in the sense that the state was back of their issue only 
that the state had authorized their organization. These banks all issued 
bills which they put in circulation. In a letter written May 25, 1816, 
by John Marshall, president of the Bank of Illinois, at Shawneetown, 
to Governor Ninian Edwards. Marshall complains that his bank is not 
treated fairly by the receiver of public moneys at Kaskaskia, nor by the 
Bank of Missouri. Marshall says the receiver at Kaskaskia will accept 
the bills of the "Bank of Illinois" one day and the next day refuse them. 


He also says the Bank of Missouri makes it a point to collect large quan- 
tities of the issue of the Shawneetown bank and then present them all 
at once for redemption, hoping, evidently, thereby to embarrass the 
Shawneetown bank. Mr. Marshall says he recently redeemed $12,000 of 
his bank's notes which were presented by the Missouri bank. 

In the same letter he makes it plain that the best of relations exist 
between the Shawneetown bank and the bank at Edwardsville in the 
latter of which Governor Edwards seems to have been financially inter- 
ested. We shall have occasion to refer to this banking system from time 
to time as we proceed. 


Following the return of peace in 1814, there was a great movement 
of immigration into the west. The political and international condi- 
tions which obtained in the United States from 1807 to 1812, and the 
period of war which followed all tended to hold the people in the Atlan- 
tic states. The economic changes which the war and governmental pol- 
icies wrought in New England greatly unsettled the people of that 
section, and for the next two or three years there were constant streams 
of immigration flowing westward. Thus Indiana grew so rapidly that 
her population justified her admission in 1816. The population of In- 
diana was 24,520 in 1810 ; in 1820 the census showed 147,178. In like 
manner the growth of Ohio is shown. In 1810 her population num- 
bered 230,760, while in 1820 it was 581,295. Illinois was getting her 
share of this westward immigration, though her increase was not so 
marked as that of the two states to the east. 

There were five factors which, taken together, may account for the 
increased immigration following the close of the War of 1812. 

1. First, the pre-emption law, to which reference was made in the 
preceding chapter. When one feared that his lands might be taken 
from him, he was not likely to take much interest in moving into a new 
territory. This law allowed the settler to select his quarter section or 
other unit of survey, begin his improvements, and hold the same against 
the claims of anyone for a limited time. That is, his labor on the unim- 
proved lands gave him an equity of which he could not be deprived. 
This law was a very great factor in bringing eastern people where lands 
were poor and scarce into the rich prairies of Illinois. 

2. The modes of travel had greatly improved within the past twenty 
years. The national road from the head of navigation on the Potomac 
over the Alleghanies to the Ohio river had greatly stimulated the move- 
ment of immigration from the Chesapeake region to the Ohio. On the 
Ohio there were steamboats in a very early period as early as 1811. 
The national road and the Ohio river therefore furnished a direct route 
from the -tidewater region of Virginia to Shawneetown, Cairo, or St. 
Louis. Thousands of people came in wagons and still others built their 
own flatboats and floated down the Ohio. 

3. It was the policy of the territorial government in Illinois to 
organize counties just as rapidly as there could be found any excuse 
for it at all. Many counties were organized with only a few score of 
people. This practice has proved a great advantage in building up 
all of our western states. People do not like to move into regions of a 
new country where civil government is administered at some inaccess- 






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ible or distant point, or where the government is poorly organized or 
poorly executed. By 1818 fifteen counties had been created in Illinois, 
county seats had been located and crude public buildings erected, and 
officers of the law selected and installed. 

4. The treaties with the Indians made immediately at the close 
of the War of 1812 had given assurance that there would be no more 
'Indian massacres" in Illinois. Besides there were released large 
quantities of land which the government could offer the settlers for 
permanent homes. And in connection with this may be mentioned 
the setting aside of the military tract which lies between the Illinois 
and the Mississippi rivers for those soldiers who had served in the 
War of 1812 and who were entitled to bounty lands. 

5. Not least was the fact that war is a time of more or less rest- 
lessness and at its close there is always a period of readjustment in 
which there is a considerable movement from one region to another. 
All these factors were at work building up the population of Illinois. 


The accompanying map shows the relative location of the fifteen 
counties which had been organized up to 1818. The people were 
thinking of statehood and when the movement was once under way 
there was constant growth of statehood sentiment. 

The Ordinance of 1787 provided that the region known as the 
Northwest Territory might be, when sufficiently populated, admit- 
ted into the union as three, four, or five states. The westernmost 
state, if three, should include the territory west of the Ohio, Wa- 
bash, and a line due north from Vincennes; or if two states were to 
be made of this territory then the south state should be bounded on 
the north by a parallel passing through the southern bend of Lake 
Michigan. The northern boundary of Indiana had been placed at 
this parallel. The citizens of Illinois had began almost immediately 
after the admission of Indiana to agitate for the admission of Illi- 
nois as a state. 


Mr. Benjamin Stephenson's term as delegate in congress from 
Illinois territory expired March 4, 1817. In the winter preceding 
the territorial legislature had elected Nathaniel Pope as his suc- 
cessor. Pope took his seat in congress December, 1817, and imme- 
diately took rank as a useful member of the national house. 
Nathaniel Pope was a native of Kentucky, having been born at 
Louisville in that state in 1774. He was educated in the old Transyl- 
vania University at Lexington. He studied law with his brother, 
Senator John Pope, and came into Illinois about 1808. He set- 
tled at Kaskaskia and became the first territorial secretary under 
Governor Ninian Edwards. He was a shrewd lawyer with a judicial 
mind, quick and farseeing. He rendered a great service to his state 
and to his country. 



The second session of the third territorial legislature, convened De- 
cember 1, 1817, and adjourned January 12, 1818. At this session a 
petition was formulated and forwarded to the delegate in congress, 
Mr. Nathaniel Pope, praying congress for the passage of an act which 
would permit the people of Illinois territory to form a constitution and 
apply for admission into the union. 


Mr. Pope presented the petition on the 16th of January, 1818, and 
it was referred to a committee of which he was a member. Mr. Pope 
being a representative of the people making the petition, the committee 
requested him to draw the bill for the enabling act. This he did and 
in due course of time the committee was ready to report. On April 7, 
1818, the committee reported the bill which had been drawn. The re- 
port was now referred to the committee of the whole in which the bill 
was taken up April 13. Here in committee of the whole was revealed 
the most far-seeing statesmanship of Mr. Pope. To understand this 
matter fully it will be necessary for us to recall some provisions in the 
Ordinance of 1787. 

The fifth article of the ordinance provided there should be made 
from the Northwest Territory not fewer than three nor more than five 
states ; and the boundary of the westernmost state should be the Missis- 
sippi, the Ohio and the Wabash rivers and a line due north from Vin- 
cennes to the boundary between the United States and Canada. The 
middle as well as the easternmost state should extend to the Canada 
line. Provided, congress should have authority "to form one or two 
states in that part of the said territory which lies north of an east and 
west line drawn through the southernly bend or extreme of Lake Mich- 

The latitude of the extreme southerly end of Lake Michigan is 41 
degrees and 39 minutes. In the bill which Mr. Pope first drew the 
northern boundary of Illinois was put at 41 degrees and 39 minutes; 
but between the time that the bill was referred to the committee of 
the whole on the 7th of April and the day set for its consideration in 
committee of the whole, Mr. Pope made a discovery. He saw that if 
41 degrees 39 minutes were made the northern boundary that the state 



when admitted would have no lake coast and would therefore be at a 
disadvantage in matters of trade and commerce on the lakes. So in the 
committee of the whole on the 13th of April, apparently without con- 
sulting anyone, Mr. Pope moved two amendments to the bill as for- 
merly drawn by himself. One of these provided for the extension of 
the northern boundary from 41 degrees 39 minutes to 42 degrees and 
30 minutes; the other provided for the application of three per cent 
of the sale of the public lands within the state of Illinois to the encour- 
agement of learning, and two per cent to be used by congress in build- 
ing roads leading into the state. This latter amendment was a farseeing 
measure and was readily agreed to by everyone. The first one was 
probably not so popular and Mr. Pope was under the necessity of 
inventing argument to prove the wisdom of his amendment. 

First. He argued that in confederacies there was always the danger 
of secession. Illinois was so situated the Mississippi, Ohio, Wabash, 
Illinois, Kentucky, and Tennessee rivers so bound Illinois to the south 
that in case of secession that Illinois would go with the southern states. 
Illinois geographically was needed to unify the commerce and trade of 
the region to the south and west of the Alleghanies. But if the line 
were pushed to the parallel of 42 degrees and 30 minutes, Illinois would 
have fifty or sixty miles of lake coast. And while the commerce of 
the lakes was unimportant now, the time would come when the port of 
Chicago would be like turning the Mississippi into the lake. And again 
if the northern line be made 42 degrees 30 minutes, it would give a 
strip fifty miles wide and reaching from Lake Michigan to the Mis- 
sissippi river. This strip of land would contain a population which 
would exert a very great influence in attaching the interests of Illinois 
to those of Ohio, Indiana, Pennsylvania, and New York. 

Second. The Mississippi ran unobstructed to the Gulf. The time 
would come when it would be very desirable that a water-way should 
be made connecting the Mississippi with Lake Michigan. The Illinois 
river presented the most feasible route and its head waters were in 
close proximity to the lake. If a canal were constructed connecting the 
lake with the Mississippi, through the Illinois river or by any other 
route, the state would be strongly attached to the lake route to the 
sea and much of the products of not only Illinois but of the adjacent 
states would find its way to the seaboard through the port of Chicago. 

Mr. Pope's earnestness and clearness of presentation were convinc- 
ing and the committee of the whole voted to recommend the passage of 
the bill as amended. On the 18th of April the bill passed and became a 
law. It will be profitable if we will study briefly the provisions of this 
Enabling Act. 

The act has seven sections. Let us examine each one. 

First. The people of the territory of Illinois are authorized to form 
a constitution, to assume any name they wish, and may be admittted into 
the union upon equal footing with the original states. 

Second. The boundary shall be as follows: "Beginning at the 
mouth of the "Wabash river ; thence up the same, and with the line of 
Indiana, to the northwest corner of said state; thence east with the line 
of said state to the middle of Lake Michigan; thence north along the 
middle of said lake, to north latitude 42 degrees and 30 minutes ; thence 
west to the middle of the Mississippi river ; thence down along the mid- 
dle of that river to its confluence with the Ohio river ; and thence up the 
latter river along its northwestern shore to the beginning." 


Third. This section states the qualifications of those who shall vote 
for members of the constitutional convention. It also names the fifteen 
counties which shall send representatives to the said convention as fol- 
lows : Bond, Madison, St. Glair, Monroe, Randolph, Jackson, Johnson, 
Pope, Gallatin, White, Edwards, Crawford, Union, Washington, and 
Franklin. The election day was set for the first Monday in July (6) 
and the two following days. The number of delegates to the conven- 
tion was fixed two for each county except Madison, St. Clair, and Galla- 
tin, which should have three each thirty-three in all. 

Fourth. The day for the meeting of the convention was fixed for the 
first Monday in August. The form of government must be Republican, 
and there must be forty thousand inhabitants before the territory can 
be admitted as a state. 

Fifth. The state when admitted shall be entitled to one repre- 
sentative in congress. 

Sixth. The following propositions were offered to the convention: 

1. Section number 16 in each township which shall be for the bene- 
fit of the schools of that township. 

2. The gift of all salt springs within the state together with the 
lands reserved for them. These salt springs and land to be held by 
the legislature for the benefit of the state. The lands could not be 
sold, nor rented for a longer period than ten years at any one time. 

3. The state was offered five per cent of the net proceeds of the 
sale of public lands within the state ; two per cent to be expended by 
congress in roads leading to the state and three per cent to be used 
by the state legislature in promoting learning. 

4. The state was offered a township of land to be used to found 
a seminary of learning. 

These four propositions or gifts were to be accepted and an ordi- 
nance passed and a guarantee given that all land sold by the general 
government within the limits of the state should be exempt from 
taxation for five years and that non-resident land holders shall be 
taxed no higher than those who live in the state. 

Seventh. All territory north of the north line of Indiana and 
north of the north line of Illinois should be attached to the Michigan 
territory for purposes of government. 

"No man ever rendered the state a more important service in 
congress than did Nathaniel Pope, to whom the people of Illinois are 
indebted for securing the passage of this enabling law, upon which 
he succeeded in ingrafting the important provisions set forth above. 
And if political rewards were meted out in proportion to the merits 
of the service rendered, the people's representatives would with one 
accord have selected him as their senator in congress. Bright and 
steady as was his fame as a jurist, it would have paled before the 
brilliant luster of his career as a statesman." 


As has been said, the Enabling Act became a law the 18th of 
April. 1818. The election of delegates to the constitutional conven- 
tion was fixed for the first Monday in July, and the constitutional 
convention was to convene the first Monday in August. But the first 
thing to do was to take the census of the territory, and if it did not 


have the forty thousand then there would be no need for the con- 
vention. It was soon evident that the territory did not have the re- 
quired number. The story is told that the marshal stationed his 
enumerators on the public highways and counted the travellers and 
immigrants, regardless of their destination. Not only this, but it 
is asserted that often the same traveller or immigrant was counted 
twice or even thrice. At last the enumerators returned forty thou- 
sand inhabitants, but as the returns were afterward footed up there 
were really only thirty-four thousand six hundred and twenty people 
in the proposed state. The delegates were duly elected and assembled 
at Kaskaskia on the first Monday in August. There were two subjects 
which were discussed in the canvass for delegates to the convention; 
one was the question of whether the constituency ought to have the 
right of instruction, and the other was the question of slavery. 

The following is a list of those who assembled as delegates: 

St. Clair county Jesse B. Thomas, John Messenger, James Le- 
men, Jr. 

Randolph George Fisher, Elias Kent Kane. 

Madison Benjamin Stephenson, Joseph Borough, Abraham Prick- 

Gallatin Michael Jones, Leonard White, Adolphus Frederick 

Johnson Hezekiah West, Wm. McFatridge. 

Edwards Seth Gard, Levi Compton. 

White Willis Hargrave, Wm McIIenry. 

Monroe Caldwell Cams, Enoch Moore. 

Pope Samuel O'Melveny, Hamlet Ferguson. 

Jackson Conrad Will, James Hall, Jr. 

Crawford Joseph Kitchell, Edward N. Cullom. 

Bond- Thomas Kirkpatrick, Samuel J. Morse. 

Union William Eckols, John Whittaker. 

Washington Andrew Bankson (other delegate died during con- 

Franklin Isham Harrison, Thomas Roberts. 

The convention met August 3. 1818, and finished its labors and 
adjourned August 26. Jesse B. Thomas from St. Clair county was 
elected chairman, and William C. Greenup was made secretary. Up 
to within the past year no one knew of a copy of the proceedings of 
the convention, but a copy has been found and is in the possession of 
the Illinois State Historical Library. 

The constitution was not submitted to the people for ratification 
and the only officers which the people might elect were : Governor, 
lieutenant governor, members of the general assembly, sheriffs, and 
coroners. The offices which were filled by appointment of either the 
governor or the general assembly were: Judges of the supreme, cir- 
cuit and probate courts ; prosecuting attorney, county clerk, circuit 
clerk, recorder, justice of the peace, auditor of public accounts, at- 
torney general, secretary of state. 

Before taking up the elections under the constitution, let us make 
a brief study of the document. 



The preamble to the constitution refers to the enabling act, quotes 
from the preamble of the constitution of the United States, and traces 
the boundaries of the state following the boundary lines as described 
in the enabling act. 

Before taking up the elections under the constitution, let us make 
a brief study of the document. 

Article one provides that all government power shall be exer- 
cised through three departments, namely: The legislative, the execu- 
tive, the judicial. 

Article two vests the legislative authority in a general assembly 
which shall consist of a senate and a house of representatives. It 
also fixes qualifications of members of the two houses, states the 
modes by which bills may become laws. Section 27 reads "In all 
elections all white male inhabitants above the age of twenty-one 
years, having resided in the state six months next preceding the elec- 
tion, shall enjoy the right of an elector; but no person shall be en- 
titled to vote except in the county or district in which he shall ac- 
tually reside at the time of the election." 

Article three vests the executive authority in a governor and 
other officers and defines their duties. 

Article four locates the judicial power in one supreme court and 
in such inferior courts as the legislature may from time to time or- 
dain and establish. 

Article five creates and organizes the militia. 

Article six has three sections which are as follows: 

Section 1. Neither slavery or involuntary servitude shall here- 
after be introduced into this state, otherwise than for the punish- 
ment of crimes whereof the party shall have been duly convicted; nor 
shall any male person, arrived at the age of twenty-one years, nor fe- 
male person arrived at the age of eighteen years, be held to serve any 
person as a servant, under any indenture hereafter made, unless such 
person shall enter into such indenture while in a state of perfect 
freedom, and on condition of a bona fide consideration received or to 
be received for their service. Nor shall any indenture of any negro 
or mulatto, hereafter made and executed out of this state, or if made 
in this state, where the term of service exceeds one year, be of the 
least validity, except those given in cases of apprenticeship. 

Section 2. No person bound to labor in any other state, shall be 
hired to labor in this state, except within the tract reserved for the 
salt works near Shawneetown; nor even at that place for a longer 
period than one year at any one time; nor shall it be allowed there 
after the year 1825. Any violation of this article shall effect the 
emancipation of such person from his obligation to service. 

Section 3. Each and every person who has been bound to serv- 
ice by contract or indenture in virtue of the laws of Illinois ter- 
ritory heretofore existing, and in conformity to the provisions of the 
same, without fraud or collusion, shall be held to a specific perform- 
ance of their contracts or indentures; and such negroes and mulat- 
toes as have been registered in conformity with the aforesaid laws, 
shall serve out the time appointed by said laws ; provided, however, 
that the children hereafter born of such persons, negroes or mulat- 
toes, shall become free, the males at the age of twenty-one years, the 


females at the age of eighteen years. Children born of indentured 
parents shall be entered with the clerk of the county in which they 
reside, by their owners, within six months after the birth of said 

Notice the wording in section one "shall hereafter be introduced 
into this state. ' ' Such a guarantee was necessary in order that the stat 
might be admitted into the union. The consent of the negro was always 
necessary to a contract of indenture, and this was hereafter to be inter- 
preted as "a state of perfect freedom." Again indentures were of va- 
lidity for only one year. It came to be customary for the man who had 
indentured slaves to take them across the Ohio and have them inden- 
tured yearly. 

Section two provides that slaves "hired" in slave states could be 
brought into the salt works at Shawneetown and held for one year. At 
the end of one year they could be hired again. But all this must stop 
by the year 1825. 

Section three provides that all negroes who were, at the making of 
the constitution, under an "indenture" must faithfully fulfill that con- 
tract. And children born of indentured parents were to be eventually 

The constitution in no way affected the slaves held by the French 
and their descendants. These provisions will be noted later as we have 
occasion to consider the laws passed by the legislatures of the coming 
years. Upon the whole the entire system of slavery and indentured serv- 
ice remained practically the same as under the territorial laws. 

Article seven provides for the amending of the constitution. 

Article eight contains a bill of rights. The bill contains twenty-three 
sections and covers all imaginable claims to protection which the indi- 
vidual might ever need. 

The schedule is a miscellaneous collection of provisions which 
could not easily be classified elsewhere. 

It is said that only five of the thirty-three members of the con- 
vention were lawyers. Most of them were farmers. Elias Kent 
Kane is understood to have been the leading spirit of the conven- 
tion. The men were practical every day people, simple in their 
tastes and unlearned in the arts of the politician. It is not at all 
easily understood why such a body of men who were certainly demo- 
cratic in their political ideals should clothe the governor with such 
extensive appointing power and thus virtually rob their fellow citi- 
zens of the right of franchise on many important offices. This feature 
of the constitution of 1818 was pernicious in that it fostered 
office seeking. The governor was hounded for positions and the 
members of the legislature often traded their votes for the support 
of a fellow member in the choice of some office holder. 

The governor did not have the veto power as now. This power 
was exercised by the governor in conjunction with the supreme court. 
This assembly of the governor and judges was known in the con- 
stitution as the Council of Revision. The constitution of 1818 abol- 
ished imprisonment for debt. This was a very advanced step to 
take for those days. The legislature was not prohibited from grant- 
ing divorces and this subject was a fruitful source of special legisla- 
tion at each session. Neither was the legislature prohibited from 
loaning the credit of the state to any corporate enterprise, and as 
a result the state was in duty bound to redeem the pledge of more 


than one corporation. Especially was this the case in the banking 
business and in internal improvements. The enabling act did not 
require the submission of the constitution to a referendum vote of 
the people. The progressive ideas of which we hear so much nowa- 
days had not yet taken hold on the political mind. The enabling 
act required that the electors voting for the members of the consti- 
tutional convention should be "white male citizens of the United 
States, who shall have arrived at the age of twenty-one years, and 
have resided in said territory six months previous to the day of elec- 
tion." The constitution of 1818 was more liberal for it declared in 
section 12 of the schedule that "all white male inhabitants above 
the age of twenty-one years who shall be actual residents of the 
state, at the signing of the constitution shall have a right to vote at 
the election to be held on the third Thursday and the two following 
days of September next." 

The convention was in session from August 3 to August 26, when the 
constitution was signed by the delegates. The day fixed by the constitu- 
tion for the election of the officers provided for, was the third Thursday 
(the 17th) in September, and the two succeeding days Friday and 

At this election Shadrach Bond was chosen governor; Pierre Me- 
nard was elected lieutenant governor, and John McLean was elected the 
representative in congress. There were also elected fourteen senators 
and twenty-nine representatives. 

The legislature was called to meet at Kaskaskia the first Monday in 
October (the 5th). The first thing for this legislature was the canvass 
of the votes, and on Tuesday (the 6th), Governor Bond was inaugu- 
rated. The legislature proceeded to the election of two United States 
senators. The choice fell upon Ninian Edwards and Jesse B. Thomas. 
The legislature chose the following state officers: State treasurer, John 
Thomas ; auditor, Elijah C. Berry ; attorney general, Daniel P. Clark ; 
supreme judges, Joseph Phillips, chief justice, William P. Foster, 
Thomas C. Brown, and John Reynolds. The governor appointed Elias 
Kent Kane as secretary of state. 

All this was done on the supposition that congress would accept the 
constitution and admit the state. However, the legislature adjourned on 
the thirteenth of October to await the action of congress. Mr. McLean, 
the newly elected congressman, was permitted to present the constitu- 
tion but was not himself sworn in, as was said, "in consequence of con- 
gress not having concluded the act of admission of the state into the 
union. ' ' 

A spirited opposition to the acceptance of the constitution arose on 
the ground that the constitution did not declare against slavery. The 
matter of its acceptance was referred to a committee of three Richard 
Anderson, of Kentucky, George Poindexter and William Hendricks. 
This committee reported in favor of admitting the state. James Tal- 
madge attacked the report, arguing that the constitution was very in- 
definite with regard to slavery. It neither prohibited slavery nor ad- 
mitted it. He also opposed its admission on the ground that there was 
no evidence that there were forty thousand people within the limts of 
the state. Mr. Harrison and Mr. Poindexter made spirited replies and 
upon the vote it was admitted by 117 to 34. On the third of December 
the senate concurred and the President signed the bill. The senators 
and congressmen were sworn in, and Illinois was a full fledged sovereign 



The first governor under the constitution was Shadrach Bond. He 
was born in the state of Maryland, November 24, 1778. His father was 
a farmer, and young Bond never had the advantages of any school be- 
yond that of the log school house of those days. He came with his 
father to the New Design settlement in Monroe county as early as 1794 
and settled upon' a farm. Governor Bond, while not an educated man, 
seems to have had an abundance of good common sense, and to have had 
the confidence of his fellow citizens. He served in the territorial legisla- 
ture, and as territorial delegate in congress. While a delegate in con- 
gress he secured the passage of the Preemption Act. He held the office 
of receiver of public moneys in the land office at Kaskaskia. In the elec- 
tion for state officers under the constitution which occurred September, 
1818, Mr. Bond was elected governor without opposition. The other 
officers chosen by the people or by the legislature have been given in the 
preceding chapter and need not be given here. It will also be remem- 
bered that there was a meeting of the legislature and some preliminary 
work done even before the acceptance of the constitution by congress. 


Following the announcement of the acceptance of the constitution 
by congress, Governor Bond called the legislature in special session for 
January 4, 1819. At this session of the legslature the machinery of the 
state government was set in motion. Governor Bond's message to the 
legislature was not an elaborate affair; though he earnestly recom- 
mended the construction at the earliest date of a canal connecting the 
head waters of the Illinois river with Lake Michigan. Another matter 
he brought forward was the depleted condition of the treasury. Third 
he asked for a modification of the criminal laws in force from the terri- 
torial period. Fourth he recommended the erection of jails and a peni- 

The legislature did not find itself in entire accord with the gover- 
nor's views, and so followed its own sweet will. The work of this session 
was along four lines as follows : 

1. Determined the salaries of all state officers. 




2. Passed a complete code of laws copied largely from the statutes 
of Virginia and Kentucky. 

3. The permanent revenues of the state were provided for by plac- 
ing a tax on lands owned by non-residents, while the county revenues 
were provided for by a personal property tax including a tax on slaves 
and indentured servants, and by a tax on lands owned by residents of 
the state. 

4. Another very important action taken by the legislature was the 
passage of a law for the removal of the capital of the state from Kaskas- 
kia to a point on the Kaskaskia river east of the third principal me- 
ridian. A clause in the constitution of 1818 provided that the capital 


should remain at Kaskaskia until moved by the legislature. The con- 
stitution further provided that the state should ask congress for a grant 
of four sections of land upon which to locate the capitol buildings, and 
some of which might be disposed of in order to assist in the construction 
of buildings. 

Congress was asked to donate the lands for the new capital and it 
readily made the grant. The legislature appointed five commissioners 
who should locate the gift which congress made. They located the 
grounds by selecting sections 8, 9, 16 and 17 in town 6 north, range 1 
east of the third principal meridian. The lands lay immediately west 
of the Kaskaskia river. These commissioners were also to construct the 
buildings which should house the infant government. The capitol build- 
ing was a two-story wooden frame and was ready for the legislature in 
the summer of 1820. 



But before we leave the session of the legislature of 1819 in Kaskas- 
kia let us call attention to what is known as Illinois' Black Code. This 
was, by its title, "An Act respecting free Negroes, Mulattoes, Servants, 
and Slaves." This Black Code contains twenty -five sections and was 
copied from old laws in force in the territorial period and in the older 
states. The following is a very brief abridgment of the code: 

1. No black or mulatto should settle in the state without a certificate 
of freedom. 

2. Blacks or mulattoes having certificates of freedom must enter 
descriptions of their children with the circuit clerk. 

3. No person shall bring in blacks or mulattoes for the purpose of 
freeing them unless they give bond in $1,000 for the good behavior of 
the freedman. 

4. All resident free blacks or mulattoes must register their freedom 
with the clerk of the court. 

5. No person shall hire a mulatto or black who has not a certificate 
of his freedom. 

6. No person shall in any way hide or secrete runaway slaves. 

7. Blacks and mulattoes found without certificates of freedom could 
be arrested, advertised and sold. 

8. Provides for reclaiming blacks and mulattoes. 

9. Fixes penalties for kidnapping negroes and mulattoes. 

10. Regulates food, clothing, and lodging, to be provided for ser- 

11. Makes contracts of indenture transferable. 

12. Provides for whipping lazy blacks or mulattoes who are ser- 
vants or slaves. 

13. Provides penalty for masters who are unjust to their servants 
or slaves. 

14. All contracts between master and servant void during period of 

15. Courts are to hear complaints from servants who are citizens 
of any one of the states. 

16. Servants may hold personal property. 

17. No negro, mulatto or Indian can hold any other than one of his 
own complexion as a servant. 

18. No person must buy of or sell to slaves or servants. 

19. Where free persons are finable, slaves and servants shall be 
whipped twenty lashes for every $8 fined. 

20. Servants (indentured servants) shall upon the expiration of 
their service be entitled to certificates of freedom. 

21. Slaves and servants found ten miles from their master's home 
without a pass may be arrested and whipped. 

22. Slaves and servants found "visiting" on one's plantation may 
be whipped ten lashes. 

23. Slaves or servants who are guilty of sedition are to be whipped 
thirty-nine lashes. 

24. Persons permitting dancing or revelling by slaves or servants 
shall be fined $25. 

25. This section makes it the duty of officers to make arrests, and 
inflict the corporeal punishment. Slaves and others of color could as- 
semble with written permission of masters. 



These black laws as they were called were passed in 1819, and re- 
mained upon our statute books till February 12, 1853. 


When the legislature convened in December, 1820. it met in the 
new capital city, Vandalia. At the time this spot was selected as the 
capital it was in a great wilderness. The commissioners were author- 
ized to sell lots and to apply the proceeds in meeting the expenses of 
building and equipping the new capitol building. The town was care- 
fully laid out and lots offered for sale. These were bought for busi- 
ness sites and for homes, and the place soon had the air of business 



about it. Many of the lots were sold on time and the purchasers failed 
to make payments. In such cases the lots returned to the state and 
were resold. 


The second general assembly was elected in August, 1820, and met 
in December of that year in the new capitol at Vandalia. There was 
in 1819 and 1820, great distress in the west, especially resulting, it 
was thought, from the character of the principal circulating medium. 
The "wild cat" banks which had sprung up since the expiration of 
the charter of the old United States bank in 1811, numbered, in 1819, 
something like four hundred, and there was great confusion in the 
circulation notes from these banks. In 1820 the banks in the neighbor- 
ing states to Illinois began to suspend specie payment, and those in 
Illinois soon found themselves unable to stem the current and were 


obliged to suspend. The money which the immigrants brought with 
them into the west was often worthless, and it is said there were thou- 
sands of dollars of counterfeit money in circulation. Many towns that 
were laid out in the new western states had sprung up like mushrooms, 
and wilted down like the mown grass before the summer sun. Great 
distress prevailed and no one seemed to be able to suggest a remedy. 
Everyone waited for the meeting of the legislature, thinking there 
would surely be someone in that body who, Moses-like, could lead the 
people through the desert. 

A part of the distress of the times came from the indebtedness of 
the people for their lands. In 1800, when the lands were put upon the 
market in smaller quantities, the price was fixed at two dollars per 
acre. One-fourth of this amount or fifty cents per acre, must be paid 
in cash, and on the other three-fourths, a credit of several years was 
given, or if the purchaser preferred he could pay all cash at once in 
which case the price was one dollar and sixty-four cents per acre. 
Most people preferred to buy on time and such people were careless 
about making the deferred payments. The government became lenient 
and few ever suffered for their negligence in making their final pay- 
ments. By 1820 there was supposed to be owing to the general govern- 
ment more than twenty million dollars for lands bought on credit. 
Congress was memorialized to bring some sort of relief to the people. 
Senator Richard M. Johnson of Kentucky, introduced a bill which 
was enacted into law, providing that those indebted to the government 
for lands might relinquish enough land to pay the debt and thus receive 
a clear title to the rest of the land. The law also provided that here- 
after the price of government land should be one dollar and twenty- 
five cents per acre cash. 

The legislature set itself earnestly to the task of bringing relief by 
chartering the "Illinois State Bank with a capital of five hundred 
thousand dollars, backed by the credit of the sovereign state of Illinois. 
For the convenience of the people the bank was to have branches. The 
parent bank was to be located at Vandalia, with branches at Edwards- 
ville, Brownsville, Shawneetown, and Albion. Bills of the denomina- 
tions of one, two, three, five, ten, and twenty dollars were ordered 
printed. The bills drew two per cent interest and were redeemable 
inside of ten years. The bank was chartered for ten years. The charter 
provided that the money might be loaned in quantities of one hundred 
dollars on personal security and one thousand dollars on real estate 
security. Bills to the amount of three hundred and fifty thousand 
dollars were ordered printed, and distributed among the banks accord- 
ing to the population in the several localities where the banks were 

It must not be understood that this gigantic financial scheme went 
into operation without vigorous opposition. When the bill was before 
the lower house the banks' friends, who were in a majority, refused 
to go into committee of the whole, hoping thereby to prevent their 
speaker, John McLean, from participating in the debate. He was in- 
dignant at that sort of treatment and immediately resigned his place 
as speaker and took his place on the floor and warned his colleagues 
with clearness of reasoning and accuracy of prophetic vision, of the 
ills which would come to the people and to the state. But his power 
as an orator and his force as a logician availed little, as the bill was 


triumphantly passed. When the bill came before the governor and 
the supreme court as the board of revision, it was vetoed, but the 
measure was promptly passed over the veto. 

Shortly after the bill became a law, a resolution was before the 
senate asking the secretary of the treasury to accept the issue of the 
Illinois State Bank in payment of land. Lieutenant Governor Pierre 
Menard, who was presiding over the senate, did not approve of the 
resolution and did not believe the secretary of the treasury would 
accept the bills in payment for lands, and while the debate continued, 
became deeply interested. The debate ended and the vote must be 
taken. The doughty Frenchman said, ' ' Zhentlesmen of de senate ! It 
is moved and second dat de notes of dis bank be made land office 
money. All in favor of dat motion say aye; dose against it say no. 
De ayes have it, and now Zhentlesmen I bet you one hundred dollar 
he never be made land office money." Mr. Menard had made a true 

The history of this bank can be written in a few words. There was 
no real provision made for the redemption of the bank's issue, the ex- 


pectation being that the bills would always remain at or above par. 
The bills actually fell to twenty-five per cent of their face value and 
soon ceased to circulate. For ten years it was a source of great disap- 
pointment to its friends and a menace to the growth and prosperity 
of the state. The charter expired in 1831 and the state borrowed one 
hundred thousand dollars in order to close up its business and every- 
body drew a sigh of relief. 

There was not any other legislation of very great importance at 
this session. The two houses quarreled, and opposed the wishes gener- 
ally of the governor. However, there were created several new coun- 
ties, namely: Lawrence, Greene, Sangamon, Pike, Hamilton, Mont- 
gomery, Fayette. At this time the Pike county boundary read as 
follows: "Up the middle of the Illinois river from its mouth to the 
fork; up the south fork (Kankakee) to the Indiana state line; north 
with the state line to the north boundary of the state ; west with the 
said state line to the west boundary of the state ; thence with said 
boundary to the place of beginning." It will be noticed that Chicago 
was in Pike county. 



Shortly after the War of 1812, congress set aside in the territory 
of Illinois, what afterwards came to be called the "Illinois Military 
Tract," for the payment of the soldiers of the War of 1812. This 
bounty land as it is frequently called, lay west of the Illinois river and 
was bounded on the west by the Mississippi, and extended one hun- 
dred and sixty-nine miles north of the mouth of the Illinois river. For 
a few years after the close of the war, immigration to this region was 
quite active, but by 1820, and for a year or so later, very few settlers 
came. It is said that the titles to the land did not long remain in the 
hands of the soldiers, but that they were soon held by speculators. 


Reference has already been made to the conditions of this country 
at the close of the War of 1812. Everything favored immigration. 
The Indians were gradually becoming reconciled to the presence of 
the whites. They ceded large tracts of land to the United States, and 
the government was taking steps to have those lands settled as rapidly 
as possible. Lands in the west were being rapidly surveyed, towns 
were springing up, and offices were established, steam navigation on 
the western rivers was reducing the time and danger of the journey 
to the west, and at the same time increasing the comforts of travel. 
The government offered land at $2 an acre with the privilege of paying 
one-fourth cash and three-fourths on time. Many travelers through 
the west, upon returning to New England and to the middle and 
southern states, gave flattering reports upon the richness of the soil, 
abundance of game, and the superiority of the climate. 

In the older states to the east of the Alleghanies, the war produced 
many conditions which favored the movement of immigration into the 
west. New England had previous to the war been a commercial sec- 
tion. They built ships and engaged in the carrying trade. Manu- 
facture was not then regarded as a line of industry. The embargo, the 
non-intercourse act, and the war made the New Englanders a 
manufacturing people. When the war was over, men could not easily 
adjust themselves to the new conditions. Wages were low, work was 
scarce, and business deranged. Under these conditions people were 
easily persuaded to cast their lot in the rising west. The route of 
travel for the New Englanders was usually up the Mohawk valley, by 
Oswego, up Lake Ontario, over the Niagara portage, down the Alle- 
ghany river to Pittsburg, and thence down the Ohio. Another route 
for the Chesapeake region was up the Potomac, across the mountains 
to Wheeling, and thence down the Ohio. For the people of the Caro- 
linas the route lay across the mountains into the upper valleys of the 
Cumberland and Tennessee rivers and thence to southern Indiana, 
Southern Illinois or to Missouri. 

Not only was there a large immigration from the Atlantic states 
into the newer western states, but from the close of the Napoleonic 
wars in Europe, there was a steady stream of immigration from Eng- 
land to this country. In 1815 England's debt had reached the enor- 
mous sum of 831,000.000, specie payments were suspended, and the 
paper money was rapidly depreciating. Prices were soaring upwards, 


the harvests were bad, and legislation was against the poor. The 
"Corn laws" were passed in 1815 which provided that no corn (grain) 
should be imported until the price should reach 80s per quarter. In 
case one's income from his labor would not support him, he must be 
supported from the "poor rates." Thousands of soldiers and sailors 
who had helped to win England 's victories in the past fifteen or twenty 
years, were then without employment. Of 644 ships in England's 
navy, 530 went out of service. The use of machinery was another cause 
of idleness everywhere, and riots were the order of the day. There 
was great need of reform in the political world. Some boroughs with 
not more than a half dozen voters would send two representatives to 
parliament. Some great cities like Manchester and Birmingham were 
without representation in parliament. 

Many prominent Englishmen attempted to right the wrongs. Among 
those who were struggling to better the conditions in England at this 
time was one William Cobbett, the publisher of a vigorous little news- 
paper called the Political Register. In addition to publishing the 
Register, he was a pamphlet-writer and for his strong denunciation 
of the wrongs perpetrated on his fellow countrymen, he was arrested, 
fined, and imprisoned. At the end of two years he was released upon 
bail and came to America and settled on Long Island. While here, in 
1818, he wrote a pamphlet or book, descriptive of this country, dedi- 
cated to his friend Timothy Brown, Esq., of Peckham Lodge, Surrey. 
In the dedication he says: This book "I dedicate to you in testimony 
of my consistent remembrance of the many, many happy hours I have 
spent with you, and of the numerous acts of kindness which I have 
received at your hands. You were one of those who sought acquaintance 
with me, when I was shut up in a felon's jail for having expressed my 
indignation at seeing Englishmen flogged in the heart of England, 
under a guard of bayonets and sabres, and when I had on my head a 
thousand pounds fine and seven years' recognizances. You at the end 
of two years took me from the prison, in your carriage, to your house, 
you and your kind friend Walker, are even yet held in bonds for my 
good behavior, the seven years not being expired." 

This Mr. Cobbett lived on Long Island, and in 1818 was engaged 
in the culture of rutabagas. It seems, also, that Mr. Cobbett was very 
busily engaged in trying to prevent Englishmen who arrived in Boston, 
New York, Baltimore, and other ports, from coming into the western 
country. Just what his motives were we may not know, but it has been 
surmised that he was in the employment of speculators and others who 
were interested in keeping the immigrants, those from England as 
well as those who were leaving the Atlantic coast, from coming into 
this western country. In the preface of the book above referred to, 
he says: "Yet it was desirable to make an attempt, at least, towards 
settling the question, whether the Atlantic or the western countries 
were the best for English farmers to settle in." 

In 1816 to 1817 several men of prominence in England agitated the 
idea of coming to America. It was just while this stir was going on 
in England that Edward Coles, embassador from the President, James 
Madison, to the Czar of Russia, while on his return trip, spent several 
weeks in England (probably in the spring of 1817). There he met 
Morris Birkbeck then a man fifty-four years of age. He was at that 
time the lessee of a large estate called Wanborough, near London. He 


was greatly interested in Mr. Coles' description of the prairies in this 
western country. He and George Flower, who was also a man of cul- 
ture and means, determined upon the planting of a colony in the broad 
prairies of Illinois. Mr. Birkbeck sold out his lease for $55,000 and 
sailed from London in April, 1817. George Flower had preceded Birk- 
beck the previous year (1816), and had visited the western prairies, 
and returned to Virginia where he passed the winter of 1816 to 1817. 
During this winter he was much in company with Thomas Jefferson, 
to whom he had letters of introduction from La Fayette. When Birk- 
beck landed at Norfolk, Virginia, in the month of June, 1817, his friend, 
George Flower, joined him and they proceeded west to the Illinois 
country by way of the Ohio river, and Vincennes. From here they 
went into the prairie afterwards called English Prairie. These two 
Englishmen each planted a colony. Birkbeck called his settlement 
Wanborough after his old home in England; Mr. Flower called his 
Albion, which is an old name for England. The former settlement 
was about two miles west of Albion. 

These settlements came to be known as the "English Prairie Settle- 
ments" and were visited by all the travelers whether seeking homes 
in the new state or as mere passers-by viewing the new country. It 
also bore the name of "The Marine Settlement" on account of the fact 
that many of the settlers in that locality were once mariners. 

Birkbeck bought sixteen thousand acres of land in the immediate 
locality of Albion, and hoped to sell a large portion of it to actual 
settlers. Mr. Birkbeck was a highly educated gentleman and yet was 
not afraid of manual labor. Mr. Flower settled what afterward came 
to be Albion though he himself lived a mile or so distant at what was 
called "Park House," a country seat after the style of the English 
country residences. 

George Flower returned to England in 1817 or 1818 and brought 
to this new English settlement his father, Richard Flower, his mother, 
his sisters and two brothers. His family reached Lexington, Kentucky, 
in the late fall or early winter and remained here till the next June, 

When Mr. George Flower left the English settlement to return to 
England for his father and other members of the family, it was under- 
stood that Mr. Birkbeck would purchase land for Mr. George Flower 
and have a residence by the time he should return. In June, 1819, 
when George Flower landed at Shawneetown the entire family walked 
to Albion, a distance of forty-five miles, and upon arriving at Albion 
found no house of any kind in which they might live. It seems that 
an estrangement had grown up between Mr. George Flower and Mr. 
Birkbeck which was the occasion of there being two settlements, Albion 
and Wanborough. 

While living at Lexington the father, Richard Flower, wrote to 
friends in England in answer to certain questions in which these peo- 
ple were interested. In speaking of slavery he says: "It is this that 
keeps the wealth of Europe from pouring its treasures into the fertile 
regions of Kentucky and the industry of thousands from approaching 
the state. It would be painful to relate all the horrors I have beheld 
in slavery under its mildest forms. Whites, full of whiskey, flogging 
their slaves for drinking even a single glass. Women, . . ., smart- 
ing under the angry blow, or the lash, . . . lacking food in the 


midst of abundance, and clothing insufficient to satisfy the demands 
of even common decency." 

On August 16, 1819, the same gentleman writing from "Illinois, 
near Albion," describes the new home. He speaks particularly of the 
improved state of health of all the people of the settlement. He urges 
immigration to the western prairies rather than to stop on the Atlantic 
shores. The prairies were easily broken and the grazing was abundant. 
Servants were scarce on account of the ease with which young women 
found husbands. Female help commanded from $8 to $10 per month. 
On the English prairie which stretched from the Little Wabash east- 
ward to the Bonpas creek, a distance of sixteen miles, and extending 
north and south four miles, there were sixty English families and 
about one hundred and fifty American families. Counting five per- 
sons to each family we have one thousand and fifty inhabitants of the 
English prairie in 1819. "As to the reward of his industry, every 
farmer who conducted a farm in England, may here become the pro- 
prietor of his own soil with that capital which affords him only a 
tenant's station, a precarious subsistence in his own country; an in- 
ducement, I should think, sufficient to make thousands follow our steps, 
and taste the blessings of independence and the sweets of liberty." 
On the subject of slavery Mr. Flower speaks with the earnestness of 
a Phillips, a Garrison, or a Giddings. ' ' One human being the property 
of another! No! ... I rejoice, my dear friend, in the choice the 
English have made of a free state ; and am certain we shall be able to 
cultivate from the services of free men, cheaper than those who culti- 
vate by slaves." In this same letter Mr. Flower says "the log cabins, 
the receptacles of the insect tribe are no longer erected. I have had 
the pleasure of laying the first brick foundation in Albion ; it is to be 
an inn where travelers, I hope, may find rest without disturbance from 
insects. We have also nearly completed our market house which is 
sixty feet by thirty. A place of worship is begun. ' ' Services were held 
each Lord's day by some member of the colony. It was the intention 
which was aftervard carried out to establish a reading room in the 
church building which should be open on Sunday afternoon. 

The following is a list of prices prevailing in Albion in 1819: A 
fine turkey, 25c; fowls (chickens), 12c; beef, 5c; eggs, 12^0; cheese, 
30c; butter (scarce), 16c; bacon, 15c; flour, $9 per bbl. ; deer (whole 
carcass including skin), $1.50; melons, 12i/ 2 c; honey, $1 per gal.; 
whiskey, $1 per gal. ; fine Hyson tea, $2 per Ib. ; moist sugar, 31c ; 
coffee, 62c; fish, 3c. 

On January 18, 1820, Mr. Richard Flower writes again to friends 
in England. He speaks of the drouth of the preceding autumn and 
says they have few wells and are obliged to buy water at 25c a barrel, 
brought from a neighboring spring. Farm laborers are scarce. For 
Christmas dinner they had a company of thirty-two at Park House, 
the Flower homestead. They danced to the music of instrument and 
song. The Sunday service was attended by forty or fifty persons, and 
in the afternoon the library and reading rooms were quite well 

Mr. Birkbeck, whose residence was a couple of miles west of Albion, 
at Wanborough, was also busily engaged in opening up his lands and 
providing for the comfort and advancement of those who might settle 
near him. 


This settlement was visited by a Mr. Hulme, an Englishman, in 
1818-19, the next year after the founding. Birkbeck was then living in 
a log cabin with his two sons and two daughters. The cabin cost $20. 
He was beginning a more pretentious home near the cabin. Mr. Birk- 
beck had about him no settlers except his own laborers and some 
American neighbors who had settled near his lands. Mr. Birkbeck, at 
the time, had no land in cultivation except for garden purposes. He 
had occupied his time since arriving in building houses, barns, mills, 
fences, etc. His fences Mr. Hulme describes as follows: "He makes 
a ditch four feet wide at the top, sloping to one foot wide at the bot- 
tom, and four feet deep. With the earth that comes out of the ditch 
he makes a bank on one side, which is turfed toward the ditch. Then 
a long pole is put up from the bottom of the ditch to two feet above 
the bank; this is crossed by a short pole from the other side, then a 
rail is laid along between the forks." 

Two years later Mr. John Woods, an Englishman, seeking a suit- 
able home in the new country, visited both Albion and Wanborough. 
Of the latter place he says there was a store or two, twenty-five cabins, 
a tavern, several lodging houses, several carpenters, bricklayers, brick- 
makers, blacksmiths, wheelwrights, sawyers, a tailor and a butcher. 
At this time also they were building an oxmill (tread mill), a malt 
house, a new brick tavern, and several new houses. They were also 
digging wells. Mr. Birkbeck had by this time finished his frame house. 
Wanborough was just in the edge of a small woods. The town was 
laid out in blocks by streets running east and west and north and south. 

Albion, two miles east of Wanborough, had at this time, 1820, 
twenty cabins, a place of worship, a market house, two taverns, two 
stores, a surgeon, carpenters, brick-makers, bricklayers, wheelwrights, 
blacksmiths, sawyers, a shoemaker, and several wells. 

Four miles east of Albion was the Bonpas bridge across the Bonpas 
creek. At this point was a water sawmill, a tavern, and a store with a 
few cabins. The mill was owned by Messrs. Le Serre and Grutt, lately 
from the Channel islands. 

Mr. Woods settled in W T anborough and owned farms in the neigh- 
borhood. In speaking of stock running at large, he says: "Beasts, 
sheep, and pigs are all marked in their ears, by cutting and notching 
them in all possible directions and forms, to the great disfigurement 
of some of them ; yet these marks are absolutely necessary in this wild 
country where every person's stock runs at large; and they are not 
sometimes seen by their owners for several months, so that without 
some lasting mark it would be utterly impossible to know them again. 
Most people enter their marks with the clerk of the county in which 
they reside. . . . The county clerk's fee for entering a mark is 
12i/ 2 cents." 

These English settlers were a very thrifty people and the popula- 
tion grew rapidly. In the vote for or against the slave proposition in 
1824, there were five hundred and eighty votes, which would represent 
a population of nearly three thousand people. The settlements are of 
considerable interest since it is generally conceded that no other man 
did more than Mr. Birkbeck to save the state from the curse of slavery 
in 1824. 



The constitution of 1818 did not require the governor to reside at 
the capital only during the session of the legislature; so, as soon as 
the legislature adjourned, Governor Bond returned to his farm near 
Kaskaskia, and there he lived as a retired gentleman, entertaining his 
friends in the simple sports with horses and hounds. The constitution 
forbade his succeeding himself. He therefore secured the federal posi- 
tion of register of the land office, which he held for several years. 

By the census of 1820, Illinois had fifty-five thousand two hundred 
and one inhabitants and the population was increasing rapidly. 



With the first political maneuvering in the spring of 1822, began one 
of the most momentous conflicts that was ever fought out on the soil of 
the great Prairie state. There was no dearth of ambitious men, and 
candidates were plentiful. There were four candidates for governor. 
They were Edward Coles, James B. Moore, Joseph Phillips and Thomas 
C. Browne. 

The last named gentleman was an associate judge on the supreme 
bench. Phillips was chief justice of the same court. Moore was major 
general in the state militia. Coles was at this time register of the land 
office at Edwardsville. 


Mr. Coles was a Virginian, having been born in that state December 
15, 1786. He received a very liberal education in William and Mary 
College, though he did not graduate. Mr. Coles had all the breeding of 
a Virginia gentleman. His father was a colonel in the Revolutionary 
war and counted among his immediate friends and companions such 
prominent men as Patrick Henry, Jefferson, Madison, Monroe, the Ran- 
dolphs, and others not less prominent. Young Coles, after leaving col- 
lege in his senior year on account of his health, spent the next two years 
at his father's home, Enniscorthy, an old Virginia estate, in company 
with the above named statesmen and in constant reading in his father's 

His father died in 1808 leaving the son the estate and the slaves. 
President Madison had been won by the polish, education, and character 
of the young man, and offered him the position of private secretary. 
This was accepted, and thus he spent several years of his life in the very 
midst of the stirring times of the War of 1812. During these years of 
life at the national capital he became deeply interested in the problems of 
slavery. His correspondence shows him to be a profound student of 
social problems. Jefferson opened his heart to the young man on this 
great question and no doubt the stand that Jefferson took against slav- 
ery greatly strengthened young Coles in his convictions of the sacred- 
ness of human freedom. 

In 1815, he resigned his position as private secretary to the President 



and traveled extensively in the west to determine where he might like to 
settle. He drove with horse and buggy, accompanied by a servant and 
a saddle horse, over the states of Qhio, Indiana, and Illinois. From St. 
Louis he went to New Orleans, and from there to Savannah, Georgia, by 
water, and thence to his estate in Virginia. 

In the summer of 1816, the President found it needful to send to 
Russia a special envoy upon a diplomatic mission of great delicacy. 
Edward Coles was selected for the mission. He performed this service 
with great distinction. He returned by way of Prance where he was 
presented to the French king, Louis XVIII, and was fortunate to meet 
General LaFayette at a dinner given by Albert Gallatin, minister to 
France. In London, Mr. Coles met many prominent Englishmen. It 


was here he met Morris Birkbeck, founder of .the English Prairie set- 
tlements. On his return to America, he visited Illinois again in 1818. 
He was in Kaskaskia when the constitutional convention was in session 
and remained and used his influence to prevent the insertion of a clause 
permitting slavery. He returned to Virginia and made preparations to 
move to Illinois. 

On the first of April, 1819, he started from his Virginia home for the 
newly admitted state of Illinois. With him he brought his slaves left by 
his father's death some four or five years before. At Brownsville, Penn- 
sylvania, he bought two large flat bottomed boats upon which he em- 
barked with all his earthly belongings, including twenty -six slaves. 

The second morning out from Pittsburg he called all his slaves 
around him and informed them that he now gave each of them his free- 
dom. He told them that they were at liberty to go on down the river 
with him or return to Virginia. If they went with him he intended to 
give each head of a family one hundred and sixty acres of land and 
would help them in other ways to get started in the world. Mr. Coles 
desired to study the effect of the news upon them and said: "The ef- 
fect upon them was electrical. They stared at me and each other, as 


if doubting the accuracy or reality of what they heard. In breathless 
silence they stood before me, unable to utter a word, but with counte- 
nances beaming with expressions which no word could convey and which 
no language can describe." 

At or near Louisville, Kentucky, he sold his boats and sent his goods 
and newly freed slaves to Edwardsville by land. Before disembarking 
Mr. Coles issued a certificate of emancipation to his slaves. Of this 
matter we shall speak in the future. 

When President Monroe heard that Mr. Coles was corning to Illinois 
to live, he gave him the appointment of register of the land office at 
Edwardsville. This he held till he was elected governor in 1822. 

It will be seen that Mr. Coles was comparatively a newcomer in Illi- 
nois when the canvass began for governor in 1822. It is said, however, 
that he was a very successful electioneerer. His position in the land of- 
fice was of great value to him in that it threw him in touch with all the 
settlers from that part of the state. He was always well dressed, courte- 
ous, and dignified. It was understood that Coles was an anti-slavery 
man, while his chief opponent, Mr. Justice Phillips, was in favor of that 
"peculiar institution." Moore was also anti-slavery, while Browne was 
for slavery. The vote for Coles and Moore, the anti-slavery candidates, 
was 3,332, while for the other two it was 5,303. This shows that on a 
test of the slavery and anti-slavery sentiment the vote was overwhelm- 
ingly for slavery. And so the slavery party elected the lieutenant gov- 
ernor and other state officers as well as a majority in both branches of 
the general assembly. Daniel P. Cook was elected to congress against 
John McLean. Mr. Cook had served the state in congress and voted 
against the Missouri compromise. The great measure had been supported 
by Senators Edwards and Thomas, of Illinois, and the people were con- 
siderably wrought up over the subject. 

The legislature convened at Vandalia the first Monday in December, 
1822. This was on the second, and on the fifth the newly elected gover- 
nor gave his inaugural address. This speech by the governor recom- 
mended First, that the legislature foster the agricultural society which 
was then in its infancy. Second, he suggested that a subject of prime 
importance was the whole financial problem. Third, he was hopeful 
that the state might soon see its way clear to take steps to connect the 
Mississippi river with Lake Michigan by means of a canal. Fourth, he 
was very deeply impressed with the injustice of slavery, and recom- 
mended the freeing of the slaves in this state. He also called attention 
to the need of revising the laws on kidnapping, and the black laws. 
This speech very greatly disturbed the legislature, as well as the people 
of the state. Nearly all the people had come from slave-holding states 
and whether they ever had been slave owners or not they were easily 
touched on this subject. 


The slavery sentiment was rapidly crystallizing around the idea that 
a convention ought to be called to revise the constitution ; for only in 
this way could there be any hope of introducing slavery permanently 
into the state. That portion of the governor's address which related to 
slavery was referred to a committee which brought in a report and a 


resolution. The report reviewed the history of slavery up to the admis- 
sion of the state and then said : 

Your committee have now arrived at the period when Illinois was 
admitted into the Union upon equal footing with the original states in all 
respects whatever, and whatever causes of regret were experienced by the 
restriction imposed on the first convention, your committee was clearly 
of the opinion that the people of Illinois have now the same right to 
alter their constitution as the people of the state of Virginia or any 
other of the original states, and may make any disposition of negro 
slaves they choose without any breach of faith or violation of contract, 
ordinances or acts of congress ; and if the reasoning employed be correct 
there is no other course left by which to accomplish the object of this 
portion of the governor's message, than to call a convention to alter the 

A resolution was introduced which read as follows: "Resolved, 
That the general assembly of the state of Illinois (two-thirds thereof 
concurring therein), do recommend to the electors at the next election 
for the members of the general assembly to vote for or against a conven- 
tion, agreeably to the seventh article of the constitution." It was 
thought the report of the committee would be readily concurred in. It 
was also known that in the senate the resolution would easily pass, but 
in the house one vote was lacking to give the constitutional two-thirds 
majority. Now began one of the most questionable political schemes 
which has ever been carried out in the history of the state. Briefly the 
story is this: 

.Pike county, which included nearly all of Illinois north and west of 
the Illinois river, had returned Nicholas Hansen as a member of the 
house. His seat was contested by John Shaw. Very early in the session 
the house decided the contest by deciding that Hansen was entitled to 
his seat. The election of the United States senator was next in order. 
Jesse B. Thomas was returned to the United States senate. 

Nicholas Hansen had voted with the slavery side on all preliminaries 
and it was assumed he would vote for the final resolution which would 
call for a vote by the people on the question of a convention. The reso- 
lution had previously passed the senate and on February 11, 1823, was 
awaiting the action of the house. When the house roll was called, Han- 
sen voted against the resolution and it failed by one vote. The conven- 
tion people were wild with anger. Great confusion reigned, and open 
threats were made. 

A motion now prevailed in the house to reconsider the seating of 
Hansen. The proposition carried because it needed only a majority. 
The next move was to strike out the name of Hansen in the original reso- 
lution seating him, and insert the name of Shaw. While this motion 
was pending a great mass meeting was held at night at the state house, 
and inflammatory speeches were made. Hansen was burned in effigy 
and the great mob marched through the streets with drums, and bugles, 
and shouts of "Convention or death." The resolution unseating Han- 
sen and seating Shaw carried. The next step was to bring Shaw from 
Pike county to Vandalia as quickly as possible. It was one hundred 
and thirty miles to where Shaw lived. The going and coming would 
ordinarily occupy five days, but in this case the round trip was made in 
four days, an average of sixty-five miles of travel each day. Upon the 


coming of Shaw the remainder of the disgraceful proceedings occupied 
but little time. The call was issued for a vote for or against the conven- 
tion to revise the constitution. 

As soon as the resolution was passed a great concourse of the friends 
of slavery gathered in a mob ; and headed by members of the supreme 
court, and other men in high stations in life, they visited the residence 
of Governor Coles, and in a most indecent manner insulted and reviled 
tne chief executive. Gov. John Reynolds says in his history: "There 
was in the seat of government a wild and indecorous procession by 
torch-light and liquor." 

It seems that the friends of freedom would have been crushed to 
earth to rise no more, but the unjustifiable proceedings of the past few 
weeks had only given renewed strength to the little band of patriots. 
They must have had an enlarged vision through faith of what the great 
heart of the people would do when the question came up to them at the 


And now began one of the most important campaigns, because so 
far-reaching in its consequences, that was ever waged in this country. 
The slavery party had become intoxicated with its success and was not 
in a frame of mind to take a dispassionate view of the problem yet to be 
solved. So far the supporters of slavery had succeeded by mere brute 
force and unscrupulous scheming, but now the victory cannot be so won. 
They must go before the people and show the advantages of slavery, if 
it have any. It is now a question to be solved by the Christian conscience 
of the people. 

But the struggle before the people and among the people, was des- 
tined to be a very bitter and violent one. When selfish personal inter- 
ests are at stake, and when great and fundamental principles are in- 
volved, the contest is sure to be accompanied by demonstrations of vio- 
lent passion. "Never was such canvass made in the state before. The 
young and old, without regard to sex, entered the arena of party strife ; 
families and neighborhoods became divided, and surrendered themselves 
up to the bitter warfare. Detraction and personal abuse reigned su- 
preme, while conflicts were not infrequent." 

The anti-convention people were not underestimating the seriousness 
of the struggle, nor were they hesitating about making the sacrifices 
which they saw must be made in order to gain the victory for freedom. 
And so they willingly and without reserve offered their all time, money, 
and energy upon the altar of their conviction. 

Both parties to the struggle selected the same means for the accom- 
plishment of their ends. Among these we may mention: 

1. Public appeals through posters, hand bills, and pamphlets. 

2. Public addresses given before audiences wherever assembled. 

3. Secret societies organized in various parts of the state. 

4. Newspapers. 

Just before the adjournment of the legislature the convention people 
drew up "An Appeal" to the people of the state in which they pointed 
out the urgent necessity of revising the constitution of the state. In 
this "appeal" not a word was said about slavery, that topic being care- 
fully omitted. 


The "Antis" were on the point of issuing a similar appeal when they 
were anticipated by the pro-slavery people. This appeal by the non- 
convention people was a vigorous arraignment of the recent action in 
the senate and house. One extract from that appeal shows the spirit 
of the entire document : 

What a strange spectacle would be presented to the civilized world 
to see the people of Illinois, yet innocent of this great national sin and in 
the full enjoyment of all the blessings of free governments, sitting down 
and in solemn convention to deliberate and determine whether they 
should introduce among them a portion of their fellow beings, to be cut 
off from those blessings, to be loaded with the chains of bondage, and ren- 
dered unable to leave any other legacy to their posterity than the in- 
heritance of their own servitude ; the wise and good of all nations would 
blush at our own political depravity. Our profession of republicanism 
and equal freedom would incur the derision of despots and the scorn 
and reproach of tyrants. We should write the epitaph of free govern- 
ment upon its own tombstone. 

In addition to these two "appeals," there were hundreds of pamph- 
lets, tracts, hand bills, and flaming posters scattered broadcast over the 
country. It is said some of these pamphlets, bills, etc., were very in- 
flammatory. The authors of much of this literature as well as those 
who distributed it were not known to the general public. But it must 
not be thought that everything of this kind was done in the dark, for 
many on both sides were very bold in their work. 

Perhaps no one man by means of his pen, did more to bring about the 
final and triumphant defeat of the slavery party than did Morris Birk- 
beck, of Wanborough, Edwards county. Mr. Birkbeck, as we have seen, 
was a cultured and wealthy English gentleman whom Governor Coles 
had met in London. Mr. Birkbeck wrote with great force, and being 
thoroughly sympathetic with the anti-convention people gave up his time 
and energy unreservedly. His writings were published in the Shawnee- 
town Gazette edited by Henry Eddy. He also published pamphlets 
which were scattered throughout the state. The articles published in 
the Shawneetown Gazette were signed Jonathan Freeman, and were 
widely copied. It must be remembered that the English people who 
were thinking of leaving England from 1815 to 1824 were too intelligent 
and too patriotic to leave an unbearable slavery to church and state in 
England, and to migrate to a country where there was a slavery many 
times more galling and degrading a slavery which wherever it had 
been planted, had blighted the purity of the social and family life, 
paralyzed the wage earning capacity of the honest laborers, corrupted 
the teaching of holy writ, prohibited the general spread of intelligence, 
and brazenly usurped the functions of government. 

Morris Birkbeck was only voicing the sentiments of the English immi- 
grants in Illinois as with ease and grace and great warmth he engaged 
in the great struggle. 

Another man to whom great praise should be given was the Rev. 
John M. Peck, a Baptist preacher of St. Clair county. He was also an 
agent of the American Bible Society. Mr. Peck was constantly going 
over the country, and he thus had an excellent opportunity to plead 
with the people and distribute the pamphlets prepared by others. 

The second means was the public addresses which the orators delivered 



wherever and whenever they had opportunity. The attractiveness of a 
personal explanation of the value of slavery or of the curse of it, drew 
to the public gatherings vast multitudes of people. The county seats 
were the centers of the agitation. On all public occasions whenever 
there was an opportunity, some one was ready with a speech upon the 
question of convention or no convention. At the public dinner, toasts 
were given which revealed the spirit in which the contest was carried 
on. Some of them ran as follows: "The convention the means of in- 
troducing and spreading the African family." "The enemies of the 


convention may they ride a porcupine saddle on a hard trotting horse 
a long way without money or friends." "The state of Illinois the 
ground is good, prairies in abundance. Give us plenty of negroes, a lit- 
tle industry, and she will distribute her treasures." One need hardly 
be told that these toasts are the exponents of an intemperate, untenable, 
and losing policy. There is no sign of seriousness, no indication of a 
high and lofty ideal of social and political institutions. They breathe 
the spirit of revenge, and of a losing cause. 

In contrast with these we need only to quote a few toasts given by 
the fearless public speakers who were at all times conscious of the just- 
ness of their cause the men who were fighting a winning battle. ' ' The 


Crisis it is big with the fate of Illinois, and requires every friend of 
freedom to rally under the banners of the constitution." "The Free- 
dom of the Late Northwest may it be like the little stone that was cut 
out without hands and became a great mountain and filled the earth." 
"The convention or no convention the world listens to hear the de- 
cision of our moral and political character pronounced by ourselves." 
"We have confidence in the people of Illinois to support a free consti- 
tution and prohibit slavery; if we should be disappointed in the people, 
we still have confidence in the general government. ' ' 

The third agency enumerated above, in carrying on the campaign, was 
a kind of secret society. The Rev. Mr. Peck was quite active in organiz- 
ing these societies. These organizations merely got together the people 
of any locality for consideration of the plans of work and for the hearing 
of reports and for the encouragement of those who might get disheart- 
ened. There was a sort of parent society in St. Clair county, and in 
other counties thirteen other societies were organized. 

To counteract the work of these societies the convention people or- 
ganized what they called executive committees of ten members each. 
Vandalia was the headquarters for this work of the executive committee. 

Among the public speakers who favored the convention were : Rich- 
ard M. Young, Jesse B. Thomas, John McLean, E. K. Kane, John Rey- 
nolds, Thomas Reynolds, ex-Governor Bond, etc. All these men were 
prominent in public life. 

Some of those who took the stump against the convention were: 
Governor Coles, the Rev. John M. Peck, Daniel P. Cook, and others. 

The fourth agency in this great struggle was the newspapers. As 
soon as it was seen that the struggle would have to be settled by the peo- 
ple, there was an unconscious turning of the people to the newspapers 
for direction and information. 

There were five papers in Illinois at that time. These were : 

The Edwardsville Spectator, Edwardsville. 

The Illinois Intelligencer, Vandalia. 

The Illinois Gazette, Shawneetown. 

The Republican Advocate, Kaskaskia. 

The Republican, Edwardsville. 

The first three were against the convention, while the last two named 
favored the convention. 


At last the struggle was over. For eighteen months the state 
had been in the vortex of a great storm. The cloud will soon break 
away and the sun will shine once more. 

On the first Monday in August, 1824, the general election was held 
and it was in this general election that this question must be settled. 
It was an eventful day. The cause of freedom was on trial. The 
jury was the 11,612 voters who had the decision in their hands. The 
result was the occasion of great rejoicing. The following is the 
vote as furnished by the secretary of state : 

Abstract of vote for and against convention August 2, A. D. 1824: 

For Against 

Counties Conve"tion Convention 

Alexander 75 51 

Bond 63 240 


For Against 

Counties Convention Convention 

Clark 31 116 

Crawford 134 262 

Edgar 3 234 

Edwards 189 391 

Fayette 125 121 

Franklin 170 113 

Fulton 5 60 

Gallatin 597, 133 

Greene 164 379 

Hamilton 173 85 

Jackson 180 93 

Jefferson 99 43 

Johnson 74 74 

Lawrence 158 261 

Madison 351 563 

Marion 45 52 

Monroe .141 196 

Montgomery 74 90 

Morgan 42 432 

Pike 19 165 

Pope 273 124 

Randolph 357 284 

Sangamon 153 722 

St. Clair 408 506 

Union 213 240 

Washington 112 173 

Wayne 189 111 

White . . 355 326 

4972 6640 

Majority against the convention 1,668. 

Some notion may be had of the interest in the convention question 
by noting the votes for presidential electors compared with the vote 
on the convention question. Pope cast 397 votes on the convention 
proposition, while her total vote for electors was 84. Gallatin cast 
on convention question 730 votes, on electors 315. St. Clair on con- 
vention question 914, on electors 399. 

The total vote cast on the convention question was 11,612, while 
the total vote for presidential electors at election in November of 
the same year in the thirty counties, was but 4,671. 

Many explanations have been offered of the vote on the conven- 
tion. There were at least four distinct elements in the population 
as regards this question. 

1. The remnant of the old French settlers who held slaves by 
reason of the treaties of 1763, and of 1783, and of Virginia's deed of 
session of 1784. 

2. The pro-slavery instincts of the immigrants from the slave 
holding states. 

3. The anti-slavery views of the immigrants from the free states. 

4. The intense feeling against slavery held by the English set- 


Hers in the eastern part of the state, as well as that of other European 

The first named class lived chiefly in Randolph county, St. Glair 
and Madison. These three counties cast 1,116 votes for the conven- 

The second class had settled in White, Gallatin, and Pope counties. 
These cast 1,225 votes for the convention. 

The result of the vote in Edgar, Clark, Morgan, Sangamon, and 
Fulton shows the character of the settlers. They voted very largely 
against the convention. The vote in these five counties stood 234 
for and 1,464 votes against the convention. 

The influence of the English settlers may be seen in the vote in 
Edwards county. But there were Irish, Scotch, and Germans scat- 
tered throughout the state and their votes were against slavery. 


The state election at which was decided the convention question 
was held in August, 1824, while the election for President was held 
in November following. The diffrence in the vote at the two elec- 
tions, only three months apart, shows a considerable falling off in in- 
terest in politics. Everything quieted down after the August elec- 
tion, and the bitterness engendered in the long campaign vanished 
as the morning mists. 

When the legislature which was elected on August 2, met in De- 
cember (first Monday) and organized, the governor sent in his mes- 
sage. He congratulated the people upon the result of the contest 
over slavery, and again recommended the abolition of the slaves held 
by the descendants of the French settlers. But the legislature did 
not follow the governor's suggestion, although a majority of the 
members were probably anti-slavery in sentiment. Two United 
States senators were elected, John McLean and Elias Kent Kane, 
both very strong convention advocates. The judiciary was reorgan- 
ized by creating a circuit court of five judges. The supreme court 
consisted of four judges. These nine judges were elected by the 
legislature as provided by the constitution of 1818, Article IV. The 
new chief justice of the supreme court, William Wilson, was a young 
man of twenty-nine years and had lately, 1817, come into the state. 
He was a young man of unusual parts. In less than two years after 
coming he had been put upon the supreme bench and had now served 
five years in that position. He served the state till 1848 when he 
retired to the quiet of a very hospitable home near Carmi where he 
died in 1857. All the other members of both circuit and supreme 
courts were prominent men. 

The legislation at this session was of general interest. A law was 
passed which provided for the maintenance of public roads. Up to 
this time the law had required that every able-bodied man should 
work the roads five days in each year. In this way the roads were main- 
tained. The new law levied a tax in proportion to one's property 
which amount might be paid in money or in labor. Another law was 
passed which provided a system of free public schools much like the 
law of today. This school law was brought forward by Joseph Dun- 
can then a senator from Jackson county. The basis of this law was 



that the voters might levy a tax for the support of the schools in any 
district, but the taxes must not be more than one-half of one per cent 
on the assessed valuation, nor more than ten dollars for any one per- 
son. The tax might be paid in cash or in merchantable produce. A 
poll tax could also be assessed on all who had the care of children of 
school age. 

This law was seriously maimed in the legislature of 1826-7 and in 


1829 it was further crippled, and little if any of the original idea 
which Mr. Duncan had worked out was left on the statute books. 

At this session also the supreme court was authorized to revise 
the laws of the state and to present such revision to the next legis- 
lature. This the court did, and it is said that this revision has been 
the basis of our laws even up to the present time. 


The law required the census to be taken every five years, and al- 
though the contest over slavery had checked immigration during 
1823 and 1824, yet in the latter part of 1824 and in 1825 streams of 
population poured into the state from the older settled parts of the Un- 
ion. Travellers who had visited this state carried into the east and even 
into Europe marvellous stories of the Sangamon country. The name 
itself is poetic, and there was connected with the expression a sort 
of vision of paradise. Ferdinand Ernst, in 1819-20, visited that re- 
gion. He was a German traveller who reached the site of Vandalia 
before the sale of lots took place, which occurred the 6th of Septem- 
ber, 1819. From here he visited the Sangamon country. There was 
a very good road leading from Edwardsville into the Sangamon 
country. As nearly as this road can be now traced, it ran in almost 
a straight line from Edwardsville to the present city of Carlinville, 
passing on the way the site of the present flourishing city of Bunker 
Hill. From Carlinville the road bent to the east of north passing out 
of the present county of Macoupin at the northeast corner, three 
miles east of the present city of Virden. From this point east of north 
to a point very near Rochester, and thence to a point near the junc- 
tion of the south branch and north fork of the Sangamon river, leav- 
ing the site of the present capital some four or five miles to the west. 
From here the road continued the same general direction to the* pres- 
ent city of Lincoln. The road continued this general direction till 
it left the present county of Logan at the old Kickapoo capital. Here 
it struck Tazewell county and thence turned northwest to Lake Pe- 
oria. This was the route taken by Governor Edwards in his campaign 
in 1812. 

Mr. Ernst, the traveller, took this road in 1819. He started from 
Vandalia and went northwest, crossed Shoal creek, left the head 
waters of Silver and Sugar creek to the southwest, passed not far 
from Mt. Olive and Gillespie, and came into the road described above, 
a few miles north of Bunker Hill. He describes the big prairie which 
separates the head waters of the Macoupin and the Sangamon. He 
says the moment one passes over the divide into the drainage basin 
of the Sangamon he sees a marked difference in the character of the 
soil. The second night out the traveller stayed with a family on 
Sugar creek, about two miles west of Pawnee. Sixty farms had been 
opened on this stream since the spring of 1819. The sod-corn was 
from ten to fifteen feet high. The land was not yet surveyed and 
could not be for some three years. This was called "the beautiful 
land of the Sangamon." From this point Mr. Ernst traveled west 
in a circuit around the present site of Springfield to Elkhart Grove. 
Here lived a Mr. Latham who had thirty acres in cultivation. This 
farm was the farthest north of any east of the Illinois river. How- 
ever, there were some farms laid out at the old Kickapoo capital 
just in the edge of Tazewell county, but no settlements made. Mr. 
Ernst went north to Salt creek, but not being able to get across he 
retraced his steps. 

Mr. Ernst says: 

In the vicinity of this town (Vandalia) is a large amount of fine 
land; but every one is full of praise of those sixty or eighty miles 
northward upon the River Sangamon. The expression the ''Sanga- 


mon country," applied to all that country through which the San- 
gamon river and its branches now. Peck's Gazetteer, page 131, says: 
This country contains a larger quantity of rich land than any other 
in the state. The Sangamon, in particular, is an Arcadian region, 
in which nature has delighted to bring together her happiest combi- 
nations of landscape. It is generally a level country. There is a 
happy proportion of timbered and prairie lands. The soil is of great 
fertility. . . . All who have visited this fine tract of country, 
admire the beauty of the landscape, which nature has here painted 
in primeval freshness. 

This Sangamon region was settled by immigrants from all the 
older states but probably those from the northern states predom- 
inated. More than 200 families had settled in the "Sangamon coun- 
try" before the land was surveyed. In the vote on the convention 
question, Sangamon county cast 875 votes 153 for and 722 against 
the convention. This would show a population of over 4,000 in 1824. 
It also means that these settlers were from the free states chiefly. 

By the spring of 1825, the result of the slavery contest was known 
in all the older states, and as if people were waiting for a favorable 
report, the movement of immigration began. 

The fame of the "Sangamon country" had spread into all the 
older settled portions of the United States and the migrations were 
largely toward that region. In the summer of 1825, the road leading 
into the "Sangamon country" was literally lined with movers seek- 
ing new homes. In Vandalia alone it is said 250 wagons were counted 
going north in three weeks. 


The summer of 1825 was a memorable one for the new state, for 
in the earlier days of this summer, a notable guest was entertained 
by the young commonwealth. The guest was none other than Gen- 
eral LaFayette, soldier, statesman, and patriot. The congress of the 
United States had invited General LaFayette to visit the scenes of 
his military achievement and to mingle once more with the thinning 
ranks of the Revolutionary heroes. The gracious invitation was ac- 
cepted, and on July 12, 1824, LaFayette accompanied by his son, 
George Washington LaFayette, and his private secretary, M. Levas- 
seur, sailed for America. 

They arrived in New York August 15, and were received on Staten 
Island by Joseph Bonaparte, a brother to the great Napoleon, then 
a resident of Bordentown, New Jersey. General LaFayette was re- 
ceived in New York city by a double line of old Revolutionary sol- 
diers, amid the roar of cannon and the strains of martial music. Every- 
where the same profound respect and triumphant welcome awaited 
the nation's guest. 

Early in the session of the general assembly in December, 1824, 
that body extended a cordial invitation to General LaFayette to visit 
Illinois. This invitation from the state's legislative body was sup- 
plemented by a very affectionate letter from Governor Coles. On Jan- 
uary 16, 1825, LaFayette replied from Washington to these pressing 
invitations to visit Illinois. In the reply he says : 


It has ever been my eager desire and it is now my earnest intention 
to visit the western states and particularly the State of Illinois. . . . 
I shall, after the celebration of the 22d of February anniversary day, 
leave this place for a journey to the southern, and from New Orleans 
to the western states, so as to return to Boston on the 14th of June, 
when the corner stone of the Bunker's Hill monument is 'to be laid; 
a ceremony sacred to the whole Union, and in which I have been en- 
gaged to act a peculiar and honorable part. 

On the 12th of April, 1825, LaFayette wrote to Governor Coles 
from New Orleans saying he would reach Illinois about the end of 
the month of April. On April 28, the steamboat Natchez arrived at 
the old French village of Carondelet, below St. Louis, with General 
LaFayette and his party. He was accompanied by a large committee 


of honor from the southern states. The morning of the 29th of April, 
Governor Clark, of Missouri ; Governor Coles, of Illinois ; Col. Thomas 
H. Benton, and others repaired to Carondelet to receive the distin- 
guished visitors. The entire party moved up the river to St. Louis 
where LaFayette was received with great enthusiasm. A formal re- 
ception was held at the mansion of Pierre Choteau, after which a 
public reception and ball was attended by the party at the Massie 

On the morning of April 30, Saturday, the Natchez conveyed La- 
Fayette and a distinguished party to Kaskaskia, the old seat of French 
empire in the west. A vast throng of patriotic citizens bade him wel- 
come. A reception was held at the home of Gen. John Edgar. Gov- 
ernor Coles delivered a glowing address of welcome to which LaFay- 
ette responded with considerable feeling. 

Just here in the proceedings a very touching scene occurred. A 
few old Revolutionary soldiers who had fought with LaFayette at 
Brandywine and Yorktown, were presented. The scene was very 



The party now repaired to the hotel kept by Colonel Sweet, where a 
banquet was spread. This hotel had been profusely decorated by the 
patriotic ladies of the town. Laurel wreaths, roses, and wild flowers 
filled all available space. The ladies had also brought the provision 
with which the tables were loaded. Col. Pierre Menard sat at LaFay- 
ette's right, while the priest, Father Olivier, sat at the left. 

After the banquet several toasts were given : 

By LaFayette Kaskaskia and Illinois; may their joint prosperity 
evince more and more the blessings of congenial industry and free- 

By Governor Coles The inmates of La Granges (LaFayette 's 
home); let them not be anxious; for though their father is 1,000 


miles in the interior of America, he is yet in the midst of his affec- 
tionate children. 

By LaFayette 's son The grateful confidence of my father's chil- 
dren and grandchildren, in the kindness of his American family to- 
wards him. 

By Governor Bond General LaFayette : may he live to see that 
liberty established in his native country, which he helped establish 
in his adopted country. 

This last toast touched a tender spot in the heart of the old hero 
and he said he must stand while they drank this toast. 

A grand ball was given at the residence of William Morrison, Sr. 
LaFayette led the grand march with Miss .Alzire Menard. a daugh- 
ter of Pierre Menard. While this festivity was in progress, an Indian 



woman who belonged to a tribe camped near by, was brought to 
LaFayette. She presented a keep-sake which she said her father 
gave her. It was a letter written by LaFayette and given to her 
father, Chief Panisciowa of the Six Nations. This chief had ren- 
dered valuable service to the American cause, and this letter was an 
expression of appreciation from LaFayette. The Indian woman was 
called Mary. She was an educated woman and could speak French 
and English. LaFayette confirmed her story of the letter. 

The ball closed the day's reception, and at 12 o'clock Saturday 
night of the last day in April, the Natchez started with the distin- 
guished party for Nashville, Tennessee. Governor Coles and other 
Illinois gentlemen accompanied the party to Nashville. 

On the 14th of May the boat appeared in sight of Shawneetown. 
Extensive preparations had been made to receive the nation's guest. 


At this date Shawneetown was a straggling village with but a few 
dwellings other than mere huts. There was at least one brick house 
possibly two no more. One brick was a hotel and was known in 
after years as the Rawlings hotel. This house stood just on the bank 
of the river. A walk had been laid from the hotel door to the land- 
ing, some two hundred feet down the bank of the river. This walk 
was covered with calico and then strewn with flowers. When the 
boat run out the gang plank the visitors marched to the hotel door 
preceded by the reception committee. The walk was lined on oppo- 
site sides with the people who threw roses and flowers in LaFayette 'a 
path. At the hotel Judge James Hall delivered an address of wel- 
come to which LaFayette responded. A banquet was then spread, 
after which a general hand shaking took place. The distinguished 
visitors left in the afternoon for the upper Ohio. 


The canvass for the governorship which took place in the sum- 
mer of 1826 was a long and interesting contest. The constitution of 


1818 provided that the governor could not succeed himself. Gover- 
nor Coles was therefore ineligible for re-election. 

There were three who announced themselves as candidates for 
governor. They were Ninian Edwards, Thomas Sloo, and Adolphus 
Frederick Hubbard. The last named gentleman was the lieutenant 
governor with Governor Coles. 

Ninian Edwards was no stranger to the people of Illinois. He 
was a native of Maryland, but was reared in Kentucky. In 1809 
when Madison appointed him territorial governor of Illinois, he was 
an associate justice of the court of appeals of Kentucky. He served 
continuously as territorial governor till Illinois was admitted into 
the Union in 1818. He had served as United States senator from 
1818 to 1824. He became engaged in a quarrel in 1824 with the secre- 
tary of the United States treasury, William H. Crawford, relative to 
the loss of money in the bank at Edwardsville and also concerning 
that official's management of the national finances. He was not able 
to sustain some charges against Crawford and had lost standing as 
a result. His candidacy was an effort to gain his former high stand- 
ing in his adopted state. 

Thomas Sloo was a successful merchant at Shawneetown and later 
at McLeansboro. He came of a noted family, and was himself a 
courtly gentleman. He had never practiced public speaking and so 
was greatly handicapped in the race against so polished a public 
speaker as Ninian Edwards. 

It is said of Edwards that he dressed faultlessly, and was a "man 
with a noble, princely appearance." He made his canvass of the 
state in all the circumstance of a Virginia planter broadcloth suit, 
ruffled shirt, high topped boots, carriage, and colored servants. He 
was bold in his attack upon the state bank management and made 
little or no effort to hold his former friends to his cause. The op- 
position argued that Edwards was old, and that he and his family 
and near kin had been holding office since the territory was organ- 
ized. But when election day came Ninian Edwards was elected gov- 
ernor for four years. 

There were two candidates for the office of lieutenant governor, 
William Kinney and Samuel H. Thompson. Kinney was a Baptist 
preacher and had taken an active part in the convention struggle on 
the pro-slavery side in 1824. He was not scholarly, but was thor- 
oughly acquainted with the people and was sympathetic with them 
in their struggle with all the problems of a new country. He was 
not averse to making use of the current methods of electioneering in 
those days. Mr. Thompson was a man of considerable culture, but 
timid, and not having previously engaged in politics the experiences 
were new to him and he did not make a very successful canvass. 
Kinney was the successful candidate. 

There was another election in the fall of 1826 which created no 
unusual interest. This was the contest for congressional honors. 
Daniel P. Cook had represented the state in congress the past six 
years. He had successively beaten John McLean, Elias Kent Kane, 
and ex-Governor Bond for congress, and had risen to the most im- 
portant committee chairmanship, that of ways and means. Cook 
was an anti-slavery man and had voted for John Quincy Adams in 
1825 when the presidential election came to the house. This was the 


charge against him in 1826, for Illinois was full of Jackson Demo- 

Joseph Duncan felt therefore that he was justified in opposing Mr. 
Cook for the congressional honors. Mr. Duncan had been a soldier, 
had served in the legislature, was a strong Jackson man, and made 
a thorough canvass. He defeated Cook by 641 votes. This is said to 
be the first canvass in Illinois in which national politics entered to 
any extent into the campaign. 



The third election for governor of Illinois occurred in August, 
1826. The candidates were Ninian Edwards, Thomas C. Sloo, and 
Adolphus F. Hubbard. Mr. Hubbard had been lieutenant governor 
under Governor Coles. Mr. Sloo was a prominent business man from 
the southeastern part of the state. 


Mr. Edwards had been a prominent figure in Illinois since the 
separation of Illinois territory from the Indiana territory, in 1809. 
At that time he was appointed governor of the Illinois territory by 
President Madison. He served in that capacity till the territory was 
admitted into the Union in 1818. He then served as senator from 
Illinois and succeeded himself in March, 1819. In 1824 he resigned 
to accept an appointment as minister to Mexico. Mr. Crawford was 
at that time secretary of the treasury and while before a committee of 
the lower house, made some reference to Mr. Edwards which the latter 
took as a reflection upon his character. Mr. Edwards sent a communi- 
cation to the lower house in which he made some serious charges against 
the management of the treasury. An investigation into the treasury 
department showed Mr. Edwards' charges not sustained by the facts, 
and Mr. Edwards resigned his mission to Mexico and sought reelection 
as a vindication, but failing of reelection he offered himself as a candi- 
date for governor of Illinois. 

His canvass was made upon the need of a thorough investigation 
of the affairs of the State Bank of Illinois. The opposition to Mr. 
Edwards' canvass came from some of the strongest men in the state, 
especially those connected with the banking system. However, Mr. 
Edwards had some good help in three gentlemen of prominence 
Thomas Ford, William H. Brown, and David J. Baker. 

Upon taking the oath of office as governor, he attacked the bank in 
his first message, as well as in special messages. He also attacked the 
extravagance in state expenditures, as well as the uselessness of the 
circuit court judges. He forced the legislature into an investigation 
of the affairs of the bank, but the committee appointed to make the 
investigation made a whitewash report, and again Mr. Edwards was 
humiliated. The recently organized circuit court was, however, 



abolished, excepting that Judge R. M. Young was still a circuit judge 
in the military district. 

Another matter of interest was the beginning of the work which 
finally led to the establishment of the penitentiary system. The terri- 
torial laws of Indiana and Illinois enumerated the various punish- 
ments for crimes, consisting of whipping, confinement in the pillory 
and stocks, and hanging on the gallows. The jails in the early history 
of the country were so dreadfully shocking that the description of them 
that has come down to us makes us sick at heart, and we cannot give 
them full publicity in these pages. The Newgate prison in Connecticut, 
is described as follows : ' ' The only entrance to it was by means of a 
ladder down a shaft which led to the caverns underground. . . . 
The darkness was intense ; the caves reeked with filth ; vermin abounded ; 
. . . In the dampness and the filth the clothing of the prisoners 
grew mouldy and rotted away. Into such pits and dungeons all classes 
of offenders of both sexes were indiscriminately thrust. It is therefore 
not at all surprising that they became seminaries of every conceivable 
form of vice, and centers of the most disgusting diseases. . . . Men 
confined as witnesses were compelled to mingle with the forger, be- 
smeared with the filth of the pillory, and the fornicator streaming with 
blood from the whipping post, while here and there among the throng 
were culprits whose ears had been cropped, or whose arms, fresh from 
the branding irons, emitted the stench of scorched flesh. ' ' 

It is to be hoped these scenes were never witnessed west of the 
Alleghanies. But it is true that the places of confinement in Illinois 
were shocking and the forms of punishment inhuman. Dr. Samuel 
Willard, still living in Chicago, tells what he saw in Carrollton, Greene 
county, this state, in 1832. After telling of a public hanging which was 
revolting, he says: 

Another infliction of punishment which would now be more revolt- 
ing in public than the hanging would be, I saw on the public square 
in Carrollton, in 1832. There was then no penitentiary in the state, 
hence other penalties had to take the place of confinement. 

Near the courthouse on the public square there was set a strong 
post, an unhewn log, ten feet high with a cross-piece near the top. I 
saw a man brought from the jail by the sheriff (Jacob Pry) and a 
constable, to be whipped thirty lashes for the theft of a horse. He 
was stripped naked to the hips, his hands were tied and the rope carried 
to the cross-piece and drawn as tight as could be without taking his 
feet from the ground. Then Sheriff Fry took that terrible instrument 
of punishment and torture, a rawhide ; . . . the sheriff began lay- 
ing strokes on the culprit's back, beginning near his neck and going 
regularly down one side of the backbone, former Sheriff Young count- 
ing the strokes aloud. Each stroke made a red blood blister. When 
fifteen blows had been counted the officer paused and some one ran to 
the poor wretch with a tumbler of whiskey. Then the other side of 
the man received like treatment. Then the man's shirt was replaced 
and he was led away to the jail. . . . The whipping-post remained 
there two or three years, but I never heard of any further use of it. 

It was to remedy the evils of confinement in jails and the punish- 
ments for offenses, that induced John Reynolds, a member of the legis- 
lature in 1826-7, to introduce a bill to provide a penitentiary. The 



measure met with vigorous opposition, chiefly on the ground that the 
financial condition of the young state would not justify it. Mr. Rey- 
nolds was quite equal to the occasion and proposed to get congress to 
grant the state the salt reservations to be sold for this purpose. The 
measure carried and congress made the grant, and the penitentiary 
was begun. It was located at Alton. The first commissioners were 
ex-Governor Bond, Dr. Gershom Jayne, and William P. McKee. By 
1831 a few cells were ready for occupancy. 


It remains to tell of a very interesting doctrine advanced by Gover- 
nor Edwards and later endorsed by the legislature, relative to the 
ownership of the public lands in Illinois. When Governor Edwards 
was in the United States senate a bill was introduced by Senator Lloyd 
of Maryland, proposing to give to each of the old states, for purposes 
of education, a portion of the public lands equal to the amount granted 
for the same to the new states. Senator Edwards opposed this policy 
in a very able address which was highly praised by men abundantly 
able to judge of the merits of a public address. Senator Edwards de- 
fended very earnestly and logically the donations by the general gov- 
ernment of lands for school purposes to the new states on the ground 
that schools and schoolhouses would enhance the value of the remain- 
ing lands, and thus the government would reap the benefit in the early 
sale of the remaining lands at an advanced price. He showed that 
this in no sense was a local application of the principle of free dona- 
tions, but that gifts to the older states out of the lands within the new 
states could in no sense accrue to the advantage of the general govern- 
ment, but would be purely local. It is not a very great stretch of our 
imagination to see how this doctrine laid down by Senator Edwards, 
in its later application, enabled the government to make those magnifi- 
cent gifts which have resulted in the building of canals and railroads 
throughout all the regions from the Ohio river to the Pacific ocean. 

But the matter referred to above was a doctrine which Governor 
Edwards and the legislature formulated in 1829, relative to the real 
ownership of the public domain in the new states. Governor Edwards 
in a message to the legislature covering thirty-nine pages in the printed 
journal of the lower house, sustained the doctrine that the lands within 
the limits of the states belonged to the state. He quoted the Ordinance 
of 1787, which said that the states admitted out of this Northwest terri- 
tory should be admitted on an equal footing with the older states. The 
general government never owned a foot of land in any one of the older 
states except what it bought of individuals. If, therefore, Illinois was 
admitted into the Union on an equal footing with Virginia, then Illinois 
must own in fee simple every foot of land in the state. This partly 
grew out of the fact that the government had set aside nearly one hun- 
dred and eighty thousand acres of mineral lands in Illinois which it 
would not sell, only lease. These lessees were under contract with the 
general government, subject to general governmental control though 
residing within the state of Illinois yet not subject to the laws thereof. 

The legislature formulated a resolution which was presented to con- 
gress, declaring that the United States possesses no right of jurisdic- 
tion over any lands within the limits of Illinois ; that the United States 


can not hold any right of soil within the limits of the state but for the 
erection of forts, arsenals, docks, etc. 

This doctrine was not without support in congress as a resolution 
introduced in 1826 by Senator Tazewell of Virginia, shows, and as late 
as 1842 it appears a measure was introduced into the senate by Senator 
Calhoun providing for ceding to the states all remaining unsold lands 
within the several states. This resolution was supported by seventeen 
votes in the senate. 


But all the legislation during these years was far from being wise. 
The lack of foresight on the part of the statesmen of that early period 
has been a subject of regret in these later years. The second general 
assembly during Governor Edwards' term of office attempted to legis- 
late in favor of the cause of education, but looking at it from the year 
1912, it looks as if its efforts were a miserable failure. 

To understand this it will be necessary for us to go back to the 
Ordinance and the Enabling Act. The former said : ' ' Religion, moral- 
ity, and knowledge being necessary to good government and the happi- 
ness of mankind, schools and the means of education shall forever be 
encouraged (in this northwest territory)." The Enabling Act provided 
that section numbered 16 in each township, or one of equal value, should 
be granted the state for the use of the schools of that township. Again 
three per cent of the net proceeds of the sale of public lands in Illinois 
was given by the general government "for the encouragement of learn- 
ing of which one-sixth part shall be exclusively bestowed on a college 
or university." And again one entire township was set aside by the 
general government for a seminary of learning in the state. The first 
grant, that of the sixteenth sections, amounted to near a million of 
acres, while the township grant amounted to twenty-three thousand 
and forty acres. The three per cent gift was $613,362.96. 

The first legislation looking toward the care of this munificent gift 
was in 1819. In that year the first state legislature passed laws which 
had for their object the protection of the sixteenth section by making 
it unlawful to take timber from these school lands. It also provided 
that these lands might be leased and the rents put into improvements. 
Some legislation in 1821 provided for the opening of schools and the 
establishing of other educational agencies. 

In 1825 Senator Duncan secured the passage of a law already re- 
ferred to. This system of common schools planned by Senator Duncan 
in 1825 was very much like the one we have today. Taxes were to be 
levied and collected on the property of the people in the district. There 
was a board of directors who were to have control of the school, build- 
ings, examine the teachers, and have general oversight of the whole 

In 1826-7 the legislature provided for better securities from those 
who were borrowing the money for which the school lands had been 
sold. But in 1829, the legislature repealed the part of the Duncan 
law of 1825 which gave two per cent of the net revenue of the state to 
the schools. Every commendable feature of the Duncan law was now 
repealed and the schools lay prostrate till 1855. 

The legislature of 1828-9 also adopted the plan of selling the school 


and seminary lands. The law provided that the sixteenth section in 
each township might be sold whenever nine-tenths of the inhabitants 
(evidently voters) were in favor of the sale. Later the law allowed the 
sale if three-fourths were in favor of it. 

The immigrants coming into an unsettled township were always 
eager to dispose of the sixteenth section as it made a fund with which 
the authorities might assist the schools. But this section when sold for 
$1.25 per acre, the regular government price, would bring only $800, 
and this at ten per cent interest would bring only $80 per year. This 
would not be of much service when distributed among the schools of 
the township. 

At this date, 1912, much of this land is worth from $100 to $200 
per acre. The argument for selling the lands was that the early pioneers 
were the ones who ought to reap most of the benefit of the government's 
liberality. Six hundred and forty acres at $100 per acre would make 
a permanent fund of $64,000, which put at interest at six per cent 
would produce an annual income of $3,840. This distributed among 
nine schools would give to each school in the township $426.66. 

The seminary township was sold in 1842 and the money borrowed 
by the state. The state also borrowed the three per cent of the public 
lands. The amount borrowed was about $500,000. This money came 
to the state treasury in quantities of $20,000 a year. For twenty-five 
years the state had a constant income of $20,000 per year. When it 
was all in, the debt was nearly $500,000. This drew interest at six per 
cent, the annual interest being $28,000. Thus we received $20,000 a 
year for twenty-five years for the privilege of paying out $28,000 
annually for all time to come. 


In the summer of 1827 occurred an incident which is usually spoken 
of lightly by historians. It was known at the time as the Winnebago 
war or the Winnebago scare. But however lightly we may treat the 
matter now, it was one of deep concern to those upon the borders of 
civilization around Galena in 1827. The story may be briefly told. 
The Winnebago Indians occupied the lands in the southwestern part 
of what is now Wisconsin. The whites in their search for lead were 
continually trespassing upon this territory. Though the Winnebagoes 
were friendly to the whites, they remonstrated with the latter without 
success. Eventually some whites were killed. The killing of the whites 
is said to have resulted from incorrect information coming to Red Bird, 
the Winnebago chief, as to the death of four of his warriors by Colonel 
Snelling, commandant at Fort Snelling. Two keel boats returning from 
Fort Snelling were attacked on the Mississippi, probably about the 
region of Bad Axe creek. Two boatmen were killed and others wounded. 
The Winnebagoes sent word throughout the country to exterminate the 
whites. It was this word which reached northwestern Illinois about 
Galena and spread consternation far and wide. It is said three thou- 
sand whites fled to Galena, a flourishing mining town, for protection. 

Governor Edwards was appealed to and immediately dispatched a 
regiment of militia from Sangamon and Morgan counties under com- 
mand of Col. T. M. Neale. General Atkinson, of the United States 
army, with six hundred regulars appeared upon the scene and quieted 


the disturbance without any bloodshed. Several prominent Indians 
were arrested and tried, those found guilty of murder were executed, 
the others turned loose. Black Hawk was among those liberated. 

Governor Edwards closed his term as chief executive of Illinois 
amid expressions of satisfaction from the people. He turned over the 
office to his successor in December, 1830, and retired to his home in 
Belleville where he died in 1833. His life had been indeed a very 
active one, he having held political office nearly a quarter of a century. 



In the settlement of a new country as was the case in Illinois, the 
population moves first toward a center and later away from such a cen- 
ter. To understand this matter let us recall some centers of population 
in Illinois in an early day. 


The first centers to which our minds go were Kaskaskia and Cahokia. 
From these there grew up in the American Bottom the villages of New 
Chartres, St. Phillipe, Prairie du Rocher, and Prairie du Pont. St. 
Clair county, whose lands lie partly in the American Bottom, was early 
settled, and the wonderful fertility of the soil was at that time as well 
known in western Europe as in the New England states. When Gen- 
eral Clark came to Kaskaskia in 1778, he had with him something like 
a hundred and seventy-five men. Many of these were men of excellent 
character and of clear intellects. They were with Clark at Kaskaskia, 
Cahokia, and the neighboring regions more than a year. In that time 
many of them became quite well acquainted with the topography of 
the country. When the war was over and they returned to their homes 
in Kentucky, the Carolinas, and Virginia, they remembered the un- 
surpassed fertility of the soil in the American Bottom, and the grandeur 
and beauty of the Father of Waters. And the understanding that 
eventually Virginia was to give to each soldier a grant of land in this 
western country in payment for his services, induced many to return 
to St. Clair and Madison counties. 

When the settlements began to spread into the adjacent regions as 
early as 1802, settlers from Kaskaskia had already gone over on the 
Big Muddy river, and by 1807, it is said there were twenty-four families 
in that immediate vicinity. 

By 1814, Conrad Will, a very noted pioneer, was making salt on 
the Big Muddy river and had laid out the town of Brownsville at the 
salt works. This became the future capital of Jackson county and here 
was chartered a branch bank as early as 1820. 

From Kaskaskia and Cahokia also the settlements spread into what 
is now St. Clair and Madison counties. Ephraim O'Connor settled 
Goshen six miles southwest of Edwardsville in 1800. He was followed 



by Col. Samuel Judy who lived in the Goshen settlement till about 
1840. This locality was situated on Cahokia creek and near the bluffs. 
It was a widely known settlement. By 1812 quite a number of families 
had come to this region and when the war broke out Fort Russell was 
built near the present site of Edwardsville. 

The Badgley settlement is one of the oldest in St. Clair county out- 
side of the French settlements. It was settled about 1810. In 1815 
two German families by the name of Markee settled in Dutch Hollow, 
a canyon in the bluffs and thus laid the foundation for that large Ger- 
man population which St. Clair has always had. Rock Springs, eight 
and one-half miles northeast of Belleville, was settled by the Rev. John 
M. Peck in 1820. It was at a spring on the old trail from Vincennes 
to St. Louis. For many years this was an important center of influence. 


Shawneetown, the place of debarkation of the Ohio river travel, 
destined for Kaskaskia or St. Louis, was a center from which radiated 
north and west movements of population. There was a ferry here as 
early as 1800 or 1802. This accommodated the Kentucky people who 
patronized the salt works at Equality. At this place was also a center 
of population from which people went into adjacent localities to settle. 

Mt. Vernon, in Jefferson county, was settled by Zadoc Casey in 
1817, and from that time on it was a center from which the population 
spread. It was on one of the trails from Kaskaskia to Vincennes and 
a great many people passed here even in an early day. One road from 
Fort Massac to Kaskaskia passed through Franklin county; and Frank- 
fort, now called Old Frankfort, was settled at a very early date. 

Albion, in Edwards county, has already been referred to. 

Vandalia was laid out and became the capital in 1820. It was far 
to the north of any settlement at that time but the location of the 
capital there and the general notion that this would eventually be an 
important city were the causes of its rapid growth. Vandalia soon be- 
came an important center around which settlements grew up in in- 
creasing circles. 

The Sangamon country has already been spoken of and we need 
not speak of it again at this time. Morgan county as we know it today 
was a portion of what, in a very early day, was called the Sangamon 
country. Diamond Grove Prairie and vicinity, some two or three miles 
southwest of Jacksonville, was the center of the settlements in this 
county, although it is said that Elisha and Seymour Kellogg were the 
first white settlers in the limits of the county, and they settled on Mau- 
vaisterre creek in 1818. In 1820 there were about twenty-one families 
in the county. 


This included originally all the lands between the Illinois and Mis- 
sissippi rivers, and was limited north and south by latitudes 38 degrees 
54 minutes and 41 degrees 20 minutes. That is, on the south by the 
junction of the rivers, and on the north by the parallel of 41 degrees and 
20 minutes. This tract was set aside as the land out of which the gov- 
ernment was to pay the soldiers who fought in the War of 1812. A very 


large share of this bounty land was granted to soldiers who never came 
to settle on their claims, and often did not keep the taxes paid and the 
lands shortly fell to the state. Many sold their certificates to specula- 
ors and thus large quantities of the land were held by companies. How- 
ever, as early as 1817, a Frenchman by the name of Tebo settled on the 
Illinois river on the west side about where the Griggsville landing is. In 
1820 several located in what is now Atlas township. In 1821 the county 
was organized with perhaps fewer than one hundred white people in 
the territory. In the vote on slavery in 1824 Pike county cast one hun- 
dren and eighty-four votes which indicates a population of probably 
eight hundred or more. Prior to this vote the county of Fulton had 
been cut off from Pike. Fulton cast sixty-five votes in 1824, showing a 
population of three hundred souls. 


Another center from which radiated a great many settlements was 
Peoria. This point was first occupied by Indians. When La Salle came 
down the Illinois the first time in the winter of 1679-80, he found here a 
very large encampment. Here he built Fort Crevecoeur. Probably 
there were whites here at different times from that date till the date 
usually given as that of the permanent settlements, but they were traders, 
trappers, hunters, and voyagers. The first permanent house was 
built about the year 1778. The place was called La Ville de Maillet, and 
was afterwards changed to Peoria. The village occupied by the French 
was burned in 1812 by Captain Craig, and the French inhabitants 
brought to a point below Alton and landed in the woods men, women, 
and children, without food or shelter. United States troops occupied 
the place in 1813 and built a block house and called it Fort Clark. This 
now became a nucleus around which settlements began to cluster. 

In 1819 Abner Eads, Josiah Fulton, Seth Fulton, Samuel Dougherty, 
Thomas Russell, Joseph Hersey, and John Davis arrived at Fort Clark 
from the vicinity of St. Louis. Mr. Eads soon brought his family, and 
the other pioneers boarded with Mr. Eads. The first store was erected 
by John Hamlin, who was agent for the American Fur Company. As 
late as 1832 there were only twenty-two buildings in the town. 

By reason of the location of Fort Clark at Peoria and the presence 
of United States troops, there was security of life and property in this 
military tract. Adams county was settled as early as 1820. John Wood, 
who afterwards became governor, and Willard Keys settled in what is 
now Adams county, in that year. In 1822 Wood commenced laying off 
the city of Quincy. Adams county was organized in 1824. Quincy was 
made the county seat ; four men and two women constituted the entire 
adult population. 

Lead was discovered in Jo Daviess county as early as 1700. Article 
III. of the grant by Louis, King of France, to M. Crozat in 1712, Sep- 
tember 24, is as follows: 

We permit him to search for, open and dig all sorts of mines, veins 
and minerals throughout the whole extent of the said Louisiana, and to 
transport the profits thereof into any part of France during the said 
fifteen years ; and we grant in perpetuity to him, his heirs, and others 
claiming under him or them the property of, in and to the mines, veins 
and minerals, which he shall bring to bear, paying us, in lieu of all claim 


the fifth part of the gold and silver, which the said Sieur Crozat shall 
cause to be transported to France . . . and the tenth part of what 
effects he shall draw from the other mines, veins, and minerals, which 
tenth he shall transfer and convey to our magazine in the said country 
of Louisiana. 

This shows that the notion was abroad that this Louisiana country 
was rich in minerals. Crozat brought with him "the necessary miners 
and mining tools, some slaves from the West India islands and other la- 
borers and artisans and pursued more or less diligently his explorations 
for the precious metals." His search for minerals and metals was a 
failure, and in 1717 he surrendered his grant to the king. The whole 
territory was then re-granted, this time to the Company of the West. 
This company made Phillip Renault director general of mines. He left 
for America with two hundred mechanics, laborers, and assayers. On 
his way he purchased five hundred negro slaves for working the mines. 
It was the current belief in Prance at this time that the Mississippi re- 
gion was a vast, rich, but undeveloped mine of all the useful and pre- 
cious metals. There can be little doubt that the explorers connected 
with Phillip Renault's expedition knew that lead was to be had on the 
upper parts of the Mississippi river. Possibly the lead mines of Jo 
Daviess county were worked by this company. 

The first white settler in the region of the lead mines of Jo Daviess 
was a man named Bouthillier, who settled about where Galena is, in 
1820. About this time John Shull and Dr. A. C. Muer established a 
trading post. A. P. Van Meter and one Fredericks came in 1821. The 
government sent Lieutenant Thomas to have charge of the mines, and in 
1823 one James Johnson arrived from Kentucky with sixty negro slaves 
to work in the mines. By 1826 the locality had one hundred and fifty 
inhabitants, and from this time forward the growth was very rapid. 

We thus see that as early as 1825 and not later than 1830 there were 
as many as fifteen or twenty centers from which there were spreading 
settlements in nearly all directions. With the spread of settlements 
came the opening of roads, the erection of grist and sawmills, the build- 
ing of blockhouses, courthouses, and jails. 


As has been previously stated, the Catholic religion was the pre- 
vailing belief from the earliest settlement of the French in the Ameri- 
can Bottom to the coming of Gen. George Rogers Clark. This faith did 
not spread into the interior of the state in the earlier days. In fact the 
members of this faith decreased following the occupation of Illinois by 
the British in 1765. Large members of the French Catholics left Illi- 
nois upon the coming of the British. French immigration ceased and 
nearly if not quite all of the early immigrants were Protestants. 

The expansion was not only in the matter of making new settlements 
but along with this went a steady growth in all the lines of the life of a 
pioneer people. Churches were organized everywhere. Houses of wor- 
ship were not always built where congregations were organized, but 
services were held more or less regularly. 



As early as 1820, April 20, a Presbyterian church was organized at 
Turkey Hill, a settlement four miles southeast of Belleville. This was 
said to be one of the oldest American settlements in St. Clair county. 
As early as 1798 William Scott, Samuel Shook, and Franklin Jarvis, 
settled this locality. The Kaskaskia Presbyterian church was organized 
May 27, 1821, with nine members. The organization was later moved to 
Chester. While in Kaskaskia it was a very flourishing organization and 
contained some of the best people in the locality. The leading spirit in 
that church seems to have been the Rev. John M. Ellis. He was conse- 
crated to the cause of missions and education. In 1828 he wrote from 
Jacksonville, Illinois: "A seminary of learning is projected to go into 
operation next fall. The subscription now stands $2,000 or $3,000. The 
site is in this county." A half section of land was purchased one-half 
mile north of Diamond Grove, which was probably intended to serve as 
a source of support for worthy students. This movement later attracted 
the attention of seven young men in Yale University, and resulted in 
the raising of $10,000, in the east and the coming of Theron Baldwin 
and Julien M. Sturtevant, and the founding of the Illinois College. 

The Rev. John Mathews, a Presbyterian preacher, arrived in Illinois 
as early as 1817. He organized a church in Pike county soon thereafter, 
with eighteen members. He was known all over Illinois and Missouri 
and lived to the ripe age of eighty-four years. He was an active 
preacher for fifty years. 

The Presbyterians under the leadership of the Rev. David Choate 
Proctor, organized what was known as the Wabash church, in Edwards 
county. Thomas Gould and family came to the "Timbered Settle- 
ments," which was in the northeast quarter of what is now Wabash 
county, ten miles from Mt. Carmel, in 1816. He was followed by Cyrus 
Danforth, Stephen Bliss, and George May. The first Sunday-school in 
Illinois was held in the home of May and Bliss April 11, 1819. 

In Greene county, as early as April 30, 1823, a Presbyterian church 
with twenty-one members, was organized in the court house in Carroll- 
ton by the Revs. Oren Catlin and Daniel G. Sprague. Several of these 
members lived north of Apple creek some five miles, so that eventually 
another church was organized in White Hall. The Carrollton church 
worshiped in the court house or in a blacksmith shop, and frequently 
with members in their own homes. Paris, Edgar county, had a church 
as early as November 6, 1824. The membership numbered twelve. The 
Rev. Isaac Reed, a Presbyterian minister from Crawfordsville, Indiana, 
preached. Methodist preachers had visited the settlement and had 
preached, but had not tried to organize a church. 

The Rev. Elbridge Gerry Howe travelled over the state in 1824 and 
1830 and preached as he travelled. The Rev. J. M. Peck says he saw him 
in 1825 and that he was a green Yankee, and that his wife was the 
smarter of the two. He contracted to minister to all the Presbyterian 
churches in Greene, Morgan, and Sangamon for $300 a year. He could 
not collect his money, and in a short time was in destitute circumstances 
in Springfield, where the women of the town ministered to his wife's 



Shawneetown, one of the oldest towns anywhere on the east side of 
the state, was very early visited by missionaries and travelling preachers. 
It was the point where the overland journey began on the way from the 
Upper Ohio to Kaskaskia or to St. Louis. 

Or if the travellers came overland from Kentucky or the Carolinas, 
they crossed the Ohio at either Golconda or Shawneetown as the only 
ferries that crossed the river were at those two points. This town was 
begun in 1800 as nearly as can be ascertained. The cabins were of a 
very inferior grade. The land had not been surveyed and the settlers 
"squatted" wherever their choice of a building site led them. The 
houses were probably of the character built by the Indians and early 
French walls of sticks, grasses, and mud, while the roof was thatched 
with the swamp grasses which grew in abundance near. In 1812-13 the 
government surveyed the town and there was quite an adjustment of 
claims to lots. Tradition says they burned their old log school house for 
a bonfire when they heard the news that Jackson had whipped the Brit- 
ish at New Orleans. It is very certain that after the survey by the gov- 
ernment they erected better houses. But the newer ones were not very 
substantial homes. A Mr. Low was in Shawneetown in January, 1818, 
and of the moral and religious aspect he writes: "Among its two or 
three hundred inhabitants there is not a single soul that made any pre- 
tentious to religion. Their shocking profaneness was enough to make 
one afraid to walk the street; and those who on the Sabbath were not 
fighting and drinking at the taverns and grog-shops were either hunting 
in the woods or trading behind their counters. A small audience gath- 
ered to hear the missionary preach. But even a laborer who could de- 
vote his whole time to the field might almost as soon expect to hear the 
stones cry out as to expect a revolution in the morals of the place. ' ' Mr. 
Thomas Lippincott, who was for some time editor of the Edwardsville 
Spectator, and who later was one of the trustees of Illinois College, 
passed through Shawneetown with his wife in 1818, and says of it: 
' ' We found a village not very prepossessing ; the houses, with one excep- 
tion, being set up on posts several feet from the earth. The periodical 
overflow of the river accounts for this." 

Mrs. John Tillson passed through Shawneetown in November, 1822, 
and was very observing, as the following shows : 

Our hotel, the only brick house in the place (evidently the Rawlings 
House,) made quite a commanding appearance from the river, towering, 
as it did, among the twenty more or less log cabins and the three or 
four box-looking frames. One or two of these were occupied as stores; 
one was a doctor's office; a lawyer's shingle graced the corner of one; 
cakes and beer another. The hotel lost its significance, however, on 
entering its doors. The finish was of the cheapest kind, the plastering 
hanging loose from the walls, the floors carpetless, except with nature's 
carpeting with that they were richly carpeted. The landlord was a 
whiskey keg in the morning and a keg of whiskey at night ; stupid and 
gruff in the morning, by noon could talk politics and abuse Yankees, and 
by sundown was brave for a fight. His wife kept herself in the kitchen ; 
his daughters, one married, and two single, performed the agreeable to 
strangers; the son-in-law putting on the airs of a gentleman, presided 
at the table, carving the pork, dishing out the cabbage, and talking big 

vol. I 1 > 


about his political friends. His wife, being his wife, he seemed to re- 
gard a notch above the other branches of the family, and had her at his 
right hand at the table where she sat with her long curls, and with the 
baby in her lap. Baby always seems to be hungry while mammy was 
eating her dinner, and so little honey took dinner at the same time. 
Baby didn't have any table-cloth new manners to me. 

The first organized church began its work December, 1823, it is said, 
with six women as the congregation. They first met in the Seabolt prop- 
erty the site of the Riverside Hotel. 

Jacksonville was laid off in 1825. In 1827 the Rev. John Brich or- 
ganized a Presbyterian church. The place of meeting was in a barn 
belonging to Judge John Leeper, a mile southeast of town. The Rev. 
John M. Ellis was settled as pastor in 1828. This church is said to have 
been a great center from which radiated far reaching influences in the 
spread of the gospel. 

The same Rev. John M. Ellis organized a Presbyterian church in 
Springfield in 1828. The settled pastor was the Rev. John G. Bergen, 
formerly of New Jersey. This congregation built the first brick church 
home in the state in 1829-30. It was dedicated in November, 1830. The 
pastor organized the first temperance society in the state in Springfield. 
The Rev. Mr. Ellis organized a church in Hillsboro in 1828, with two 
members, John Tillson, Jr., and Mrs. Margaret Seward. 

In 1828, the Rev. Solomon Hardy organized a church in Vandalia, 
of eight members. This church built a modest building and placed 
therein a bell, the gift of Romulus Riggs, of Philadelphia. The Illinois 
Monthly Magazine of December 30, 1830, says : ' ' The bell was hung 
November 5, 1830, . . . it is the first public bell introduced into 
the state by American inhabitants." Several years ago the bell was 
given to the Brownstown chuch, eight miles east of Vandalia. 

Within the limits of Illinois there had been organized, up to 1830, 
twenty-eight Presbyterian churches. There were also at that date six- 
teen Presbyterian ministers located in the state. 


Methodism made its advent into Illinois at a very early date. We 
have in a previous chapter called attention to the work of a number of 
early preachers of that faith. 

The regular work of this church did not begin until the beginning of 
the past century. This religious body has a somewhat different plan of 
work from the Presbyterian church and for that reason we cannot fix 
dates so easily as in a study of the latter. The class leader in the earlier 
Methodist organization supplied the lack of a regular pastor. 

The Reverend Beauchamp, a much loved minister in the Methodist 
church, was located in Chillicothe, Ohio, in 1816. He was induced by 
the people of Mt. Carmel to come to their town, to which he removed in 
1817. He labored here faithfully for about four years when he was 
obliged to give up his preaching and retire to a farm. While in the 
active work of preaching in Mt. Carmel he announced the services by 
the blowing of a trumpet instead of by the ringing of a bell. 

The work of the Rev. Jesse Walker of the Methodist church has been 
noted in a previous chapter. He came to Illinois in 1806 and organized 
churches in various places. In 1807 he organized a church on the Illi- 


nois river of some sixty members all the people in the settlement. He 
died in Chicago in 1834. 

Where two or three families could be found who were of the Metho- 
dist persuasion, a class leader would conduct the public devotional serv- 
ice. From this fact a church may be spoken of when there had been no 
regularly organized church machinery set in motion. 

As early as 1817, Zadoc Casey emigrated from Sumner county, Ten- 
nessee, and settled on a farm near the present city of Mt. Vernon, Jef- 
ferson county. He founded the town of Mt. Vernon in 1818 or 1819. He 
was a member of the Methodist church and was an active worker in that 
organization. He was a local preacher in Jefferson county for forty 
years, and was a man of widespread influence. 


This church had many earnest preachers in Illinois in the early years 
of the nineteenth century. Among them was one Rev. John Clark. He 
had for two years been connected with the Methodists but becoming dis- 
satisfied with some of the methods of that body he withdrew his mem- 
bership from that organization. He came to the settlements on the 
American Bottom in 1797 and from that date till 1833, when he died, he 
was a tireless worker in the church. He taught school and was gen- 
erally called Father Clark. He was the first Protestant preacher to 
cross the Mississippi into the Spanish territory. This he did in 1798. 
He eventually took up his residence in Missouri, but carried on his work 
in Illinois with great success. 

Elder William Jones came to Rattan's Prairie, near Alton, in 1806. 
He was very active in building local Baptist churches in the vicinity of 
Alton, till his death in 1845. 

Another early Baptist preacher was Rev. James Lemen. He was 
indebted to Father Clark for both his education and his religious fervor. 
He was a staunch opponent of slavery and was bold enough to express 
his opposition in the pulpit, which gave offense to some. 

By 1807 there was a Baptist Association in the region around Alton 
and Edwardsville. It included five well organized churches: New De- 
sign, four miles south of Waterloo ; Mississippi Bottom ; Richland, in St. 
Clair county; Wood River, in Madison county; and Silver Creek, in 
Bond or St. Clair. There were three ordained preachers for these five 
churches, and sixty-two members. In 1809 six more preachers were or- 
dained and there was a proportionate growth in membership. 



The fourth governor of Illinois was John Reynolds. He was an 
early emigrant to Illinois. He was born in Montgomery county, 
Pennsylvania, in 1788. His parents moved to eastern Tennessee when 
the boy was but six months old. From Tennessee the family came 
to Illinois in 1800, the boy being twelve years old. They crossed 
the Ohio at Lusk's Ferry, the present site of Golconda, and took the 
trail for Kaskaskia. They constructed rafts and ferried their wagons 
and teams across the rivers. They reached Kaskaskia and found 
the village surrounded with Kaskaskia Indians, who were living 
very much as they had always lived. The elder Reynolds had started 
for St. Louis, but was dissuaded by Robert Morrison, John Rice 
Jones, and Pierre Menard. The father later visited "St. Genevieve 
to obtain a permit of the Spanish commandant to settle on the west 
side of the river. In the permit to settle in the Domain of Spain it 
was required that my father should raise his children in the Roman 
Catholic church. This pledge was a requisition of the government 
in all cases, and my father refused to agree to it. ... This was 
the main reason that decided our destiny to settle and reside in Illi- 
nois. ' ' 

Young Reynolds received a rudimentary education in the schools 
available in that day, and when a young man, attended college in 
Knoxville, Tennessee. He was living at Cahokia when the state was 
admitted into the Union in 1818. He served on the supreme court 
and in the lower branch of the state legislature. In 1830 he offered 
himself as a candidate for governor. He was elected over his op- 
ponent Lieutenant Governor Kinney, who had served with Governor 


The campaign was without doubt a spicy one. Governor Rey- 
nolds has given us an unvarnished account which no doubt is a cor- 
rect story of the canvass. "It was the universal custom of the times 
to treat with liquor. We both did it ; but he was condemned for it 
more than myself, by the religious community, he being a preacher 
of the gospel." Each candidate rode over the state carrying the old 



fashioned saddle bags. Many amusing incidents occurred. At Jack- 
sonville Captain Duncan had a saddle bag full of Kinney hand-bills. 
At night some Reynolds men stole all the Kinney bills and replaced 
them with Reynolds bills. The next day Captain Duncan went about 
scattering Reynolds' bills and arguing for Kinney. The Rev. Zadoc 
Casey of Mt. Vernon was the candidate on the Kinney ticket for lieu- 
tenant governor and a Mr. Rigdon B. Slocumb was the running mate 
of Mr. Reynolds. Reynolds and Casey were elected. 

Of Mr. Reynolds, Mr. Ford says he had a good, natural, easy- 
going disposition and was a good mixer. "He had received a class- 
ical education and was a man of good talents in his own peculiar 
way; but no one would suppose from hearing his conversation and 
public addresses that he had ever learned more than to read and 
write and cipher to the rule of three." He is represented as being 
coarse and even vulgar in the use of all sorts of backwoods expres- 
sions of which he seems to have had a very large supply. "He had 
a kind heart and was always ready to do a favor and never harbored 
resentment against a human being." 

In this canvass the newspapers took quite an active part. Mr. 
Kinney had the support of the Illinois Intelligencer, published at Van- 
dalia. It was edited by Judge James Hall, formerly of Shawneetown. 
Governor Reynolds had four papers supporting him, ,all of which 
were very ably edited one at Shawneetown, edited by Colonel Ed- 
dy, one at Edwardsville, edited by Judge Smith, one at Kaskaskia, 
edited by Judge Breese, and one at Springfield, edited by Forquer 
and Ford. Mr. Reynolds says that a miner's journal published at 
Galena also supported him. 

In this canvass national politics entered as a very potent factor. 
It was folly for any man who was an anti-Jackson man to offer him- 
self for public office. There were anti-Jackson men but they were 
greatly in the minority. Reynolds calls them the Whigs. Both Rey- 
nolds and Kinney were Jackson men, but the anti-Jackson men fav- 
ored Reynolds as the lesser of two evils. It thus turned out that Rey- 
nolds was elected, the vote standing, Reynolds 12,937, while Kinney 
received 9,038. 

The candidates for lieutenant governor were Zadoc Casey and 
Rigdon B. Slocumb. Mr. Casey ran on the Kinney ticket and Mr. 
Slocumb on the Reynolds ticket. Mr. Casey was a Methodist local 
preacher who lived at Mt. Vernon and was a man who stood very 
high in the localities where he was known. He was elected. 


At this election the seventh general assembly was also elected. 
The legislature met December 6, 1830, and organized. The new gov- 
ernor began his term under very favorable circumstances. Some 
writers have spoken disparagingly of Governor Reynolds' inaugural 
message, but when carefully studied it appears a plain, sensible, pat- 
riotic state paper. It may lack the polish of former or later mes- 
sages, but what Governor Reynolds had in his heart to say, he said 
in unmistakable language. He called attention to the rapid increase 
in population. He complimented the immigrants upon their enter- 
prise and good judgment, and congratulated the people of the state 


upon the accession to its population of so desirable a class of citizens, 
lie formally discussed the following subjects as being those upon 
which he hoped they might legislate. 

"In the whole circle of your legislation, there is no subject that 
has a greater claim upon your attention or calls louder for your aid 
than that of education." 

"There cannot be an appropriation of money within the exercise 
of your legislative powers that will be more richly paid to the citi- 
zens than that for the improvement of the country." 

Governor Reynolds had, while a member of the fifth general as- 
sembly, succeeded in getting a bill through providing for the build- 
ing of a penitentiary. He was able to say the work had progressed 
quite satisfactorily and that twenty-five cells were nearing com- 
pletion, and he hoped the legislature would take such action as would 
carry the enterprise to completion. 

The salines and their reservations had been virtually given to 
the state by the action of congress in passing the Enabling Act. The 
state had had charge of the salines since 1818 and very little in- 
come had been realized from them. He was very desirous that they 
should be so managed as to result in a source of income to the state. 

The charter incorporating the State Bank of Illinois was passed 
in 1821. The charter was to continue ten years. The capital was 
$500,000. There was one parent bank at Vandalia and four branch 
banks one at Edwardsville, one at Brownsville, one at Shawnee- 
town, one at Albion. The charter of this bank expired January 1, 
1831. The end of the bank came therefore in Reynold's term as gov- 
ernor. The state had lost about $100,000 in this banking business, 
and must in some way meet this indebtedness. 

Finally, a loan was obtained of a Mr. Wiggins, of Cincinnati, 
Ohio, of $100,000 and the affairs of the bank wound up. This was 
known as "the Wiggins loan" and was for many years a great tor- 
ment to the legislators who authorized it. 

At the close of the session of 1831, the state borrowed $20.000 
with which to pay the current expenses of the session, and to meet 
other expenses of the state. 

DEEP SNOW OF 1830-1 

The winter of 1830-1 was long remembered as "the winter of the 
deep snow." It is said that the winter was a mild one till Christmas. 
During the Christmas holidays a snow storm began and for nine 
weeks, almost every day, it snowed. The snow melted little or none 
and was found to be more than three feet on an average. It was. 
however, drifted very badly in some places. The old fashioned 
"stake and rider" fences were buried in many places with the drifted 
snow. The long country lanes were covered over so that no sign of 
the road was left. On top of this snow fell rain and sleet and formed 
such a crust that people and stock might walk on top of the snow. 
The birds and small pa me suffered very much for want of food, while 
larger wild game became very tame. 



In 1804, November 3, at St. Louis, William Henry Harrison, at 
that time governor of the Indiana territory, on behalf of the United 
States, signed a treaty with the Sac and Fox Indians by which the 
said tribes ceded to the United States about fifteen million acres of 
land. A portion of the land lay in Illinois northwest of the Illinois 
river, while a large portion lay in southwestern Wisconsin. The 
United States government agreed to take the Sac and Fox tribes 
into its friendship and protection, and to pay annually $1,000 in goods 
to the two tribes. It was further agreed that these tribes should re- 
main on the lands till the said lands were disposed of. It was mutu- 
ally agreed that no private revenge should be taken for wrongs but 
that offenders should be turned over to the proper authorities. Citi- 
zens of the United States were not to make settlements on this ceded 
territory. No traders should live among the Indians except those 
authorized by the United States, etc. 

Black Hawk with whom we shall deal in this chapter, said the 
chiefs who signed the treaty were made drunk and that they were 
not authorized to cede this land. It should also be kept in mind that 
the territory ceded was also the home of two other large tribes, the 
Winnebagoes and the Pottowatomies. 

The British greatly influenced the Indians in the northwest, and 
the two were allies in the war from 1812-1815. At the close of this 
war, the Sacs and Foxes entered into another treaty with the United 
States. Black Hawk did not sign this treaty which, it was hoped, 
would secure peace. 

Upon the admission of Illinois in 1818 the settlers began to flock 
into the state and within the next ten years the settlers began to 
encroach upon the lands actually occupied by the Sac and Fox tribes. 
The Winnebago war occurred in the summer of 1827. Among the In- 
dians who were held responsible for this was Black Hawk, a very 
prominent Indian of the Sac and Fox tribes. He and several more 
Indians were arrested and held in prison for several months. Some 
of the offenders were adjudged guilty and executed, others were 
turned loose, among whom was Black Hawk. In 1830, a treaty was 
executed at Prairie du Chien in which the Sac and Fox Indians un- 
der the leadership of Keokuk ceded all the lands east of the Missis- 
sippi river to the United States. Black Hawk had nothing to do with 
this treaty. 

The seventh article of the treaty of 1804 provided that the In- 
dians should remain around Rock river till the United States dis- 
posed of the land. In 1826 or thereabouts the government surveyed 
and sold quite a number of plots of land in and about the village of 
Saukenuk, and the whites began to come in. In the fall of 1830 the In- 
dians went on their annual hunt and while absent during the winter, 
heard that the whites were occupying their village. This village con- 
tained about five hundred cabins of very good construction capable 
of sheltering six thousand people. 

In the early spring of 1831 when they returned to that locality, 
they found the whites in their village. In the meantime Keokuk was 
doing what he could to induce his people to remain on the west side 
of the Mississippi and to find homes there. And more than likely at 


the same time Black Hawk was doing his best to persuade them to 
return to their old village. At least this was what was done. Black 
Hawk, with a great number of women, children and three hundred 
warriors returned and occupied their village of Saukenuk. Of course 
this meant trouble, for the whites were also occupying the same vil- 
lage. Seeing that they could not drive off the Indians the whites 
agreed to occupy the village jointly and to share the tillable land, 
about 700 acres. The whites, however, took the best land and in this 
way showed their contempt for the Indians. All sorts of stories be- 
gan now to reach the governor at Vandalia, and also the United 
States military commandant, General Gaines, at St. Louis. The In- 
dian agent at Fort Armstrong also was aware of the coming conflict. 
An appeal was sent to Governor Reynolds stating that the whites 
had suffered many indignities from the Indians and had sustained 
losses of cattle, horses, and crops. Probably the facts are, the In- 
dians were the greater sufferers. There is good evidence, says 
Brown's history, that the Indians were made drunk and then cheated 
badly in trades; their women were abused and one young man beaten 
so that he died from the effects. 


Governor Reynolds acted with some haste probably and ordered 
out seven hundred mounted militiamen. He communicated this fact 
to General Gaines and suggested that he, Gaines, might by the exer- 
cise of some of his authority or diplomacy, induce Black Hawk to 
move west of the river. General Gaines thought the regulars, some 
eight hundred or nine hundred strong would be able to handle the 
difficulty, but the militiamen were already on their way to Beards- 
town, the place of rendezvous. General Gaines accompanied by six 
hundred regulars moved up the Mississippi and on the 7th of June 
a council was held between General Gaines and Governor Reynolds 
on the side of the whites, and Black Hawk, Keokuk, and twenty-six 
chiefs and headmen upon the part of the Indians. A treaty was 
agreed upon. 

The treaty contained six articles, and provided: 1. That Black 
Hawk and his disgruntled people would submit to Keokuk and his 
friendly Indians and re-cross the river to the west side. 2. That 
all lands west of the river claimed by the Sacs and Foxes were guar- 
anteed to them. 3. The Indians agreed not to hold communication 
with the British. 4. The United States have right to build forts 
and roads in the Indians' territory. 5. The friendly chiefs agree 
to preserve order in their tribes. 6. Permanent peace was declared. 
The Indians then peaceably withdrew to the west side of the river. 
The Indians were in such distressed condition that General Gaines 
and Governor Reynolds issued large quantities of food to them. The 
army was disbanded and returned home. 

Governor Reynolds himself assumed the active command of the 
militia. The account he gives of the organization and movement of 
his troops would make one think of the campaigns of a great general. 
Every man furnished his own horse and carried his own gun, if he 
had one, but hundreds appeared at Beardstown without guns. The 
government had sent guns to Beardstown but not enough, so Rey- 



nolds bought some brass-barreled muskets of a merchant in Beards- 
town. Joseph Duncan, congressman, was made brigadier general, 
and Samuel Whiteside major to have charge of the spy battalion. 
Most of the other officers were elected by the troops. The whole 
army was divided into two regiments and the spy battalion. Col. 
James D. Henry commanded one and Col. Daniel Leib the other regi- 
ment. The army broke camp near Rushville June 15, and in four 
days reached the Mississippi, eight miles below Saukenuk. Here Gen- 
eral Gaines received the army into the United States service. On 
account of a delay the Indians who occupied the village departed up 
the Rock river. The regulars and militia followed at a safe distance. 


Black Hawk eventually crossed over on the west side of the Mis- 
sissippi and the treaty above referred to was negotiated. 

The British Band, as Black Hawk and his followers were called, 
remained on the west side till the spring of 1832. In the early spring 
of this year, April 6, Black Hawk and his braves crossed to the east 
side of the Mississippi in spite of the remonstrances of General Atkin- 
son, who was stationed at Fort Armstrong with a few regulars. He 
passed the old village of Saukenuk and proceeded up the Rock river 
as if to join the Winnebagoes, where he said he wished to raise a crop 
in conjunction with that tribe. General Atkinson notified Black Hawk 
that he was violating his treaty and ordered him to return but he did 
not heed the order. 

This movement on the part of Black Hawk created consternation 
among the whites all along the northern frontier from the Mississippi 
to Chicago and the people hastily left their homes and took refuge 
farther south where the population was numerous, and means of de- 


fense ample. Many fled to Fort Dearborn and remained there till the 
war closed. 

Governor Reynolds having been notified of Black Hawk's move- 
ments and knowing that an indiscretion on the part of either the Indians 
or the whites would lead to serious consequences, decided to take pre- 
cautionary measures and avert so unfortunate a result. He also re- 
ceived a request from General Atkinson for troops and on the sixteenth 
of April the governor issued a call for a large body of troops. They 
were to assemble at Beardstown on the twenty-second of April. As in 
the campaign of the previous year, Governor Reynolds took the field 
himself. As he passed through the country to Beardstown he held con- 
ferences and otherwise took the people into his confidence. At Jack- 
sonville the governor had word from Dixon, in the heart of the Pottowa- 
tomie country, that war was inevitable. On arriving at Beardstown, 
the governor moved his army to a point north of Rushville. Samuel 
Whiteside was made brigadier general in command of four regiments, 
and two irregular battalions. At Beardstown he received more news 
of the hostile attitude of Black Hawk and his band. 

When the army was thoroughly organized the governor ordered a 
forward movement on the twenty-seventh of April. The next stop was 
to be the Yellow Banks, which were in Mercer county, on the Missis- 
sippi river. Most of the troops were on horseback but about two 
hundred men were marching as infantry. The roads were very bad 
and streams had to be forded. Reynolds says that most of the men, 
two thousand in number, were backwoodsmen and were used to such 
hardships. When the army reached the Mississippi the provisions had 
not yet arrived from St. Louis and after several days of anxiety three 
trusty men, Huitt, Tunnell, and Ames, of Greene county, were asked 
if they could reach Rock Island, fifty miles away, that day. They 
undertook the task and delivered to General Atkinson the message from 
the governor on the self-same day. From the Yellow Banks the troops 
marched to Fort Armstrong where they were received into the U. S. 
service. General Atkinson now assumed command and the whole 
body of five hundred regulars and two thousand militia marched up 
Rock river toward Dixon, where it was understood Black Hawk and 
his band were. Spies were sent abroad who reported presently the 
presence of Black Hawk above Dixon. Dixon was reached on the 
twelfth of May. Here other information came to the effect that Black 
Hawk's band was broken up and the men were hunting food. Here 
also the governor found Major Stillman and Major Bailey, who had 
been ordered to guard the frontier. These two majors and their bat- 
talions were anxious to reconnoitre the frontier and if possible locate 
the hostile band. Governor Reynolds therefore gave them orders to 
proceed to "Old Man's creek," where, it was reported, there were 
hostile Indians. 

On the thirteenth of May, Major Stillman marched out of Dixon 
with two hundred and seventy-five men and with all necessary equip- 
ment for a contest with the hostile Indians. He went some twenty-five 
miles to the northeast. Here, on the evening of the fourteenth, he 
crossed a small stream and began preparations for the night's camp. 
Presently three unarmed Indians came into camp bearing a flag of 
truce. And in a few moments five more, armed, appeared upon a hill 
some distance away. Many of the soldiers hurriedly remounted their 


horses and gave chase. The Indians gave them a roundabout chase and 
finally led them in what appeared to be an ambush of fifty or seventy- 
five of Black Hawk's warriors. As soon as the soldiers saw their 
predicament, they started on a retreat and passing through the camp 
transmitted to those there the contagion of flight. All was now con- 
fusion, one of their number having already been killed (James Doty). 
They floundered across the creek and in their retreat Captain Adams 
and some fifteen men concluded to make a stand a half mile from their 
camp. It was dark and the fight was a desperate hand to hand struggle. 
At least nine of Adams' men were slain, including the captain. The 
retreat continued. The earliest ones to reach Dixon came about mid- 
night, and they continued to arrive till morning. The dreadful news 
which these men brought from the scene of carnage filled the army with 
terror and gloom. The entire army, or at least two thousand five hun- 
dred men, proceeded to the scene of the defeat. They buried eleven 
of Major Stillman's men. It seems that when the Indians had followed 
the retreating army some distance, they returned and mutilated the 
bodies of Captain Adams' men and later went to the camp, broke the 
spokes from the wagons, poured out a keg of whiskey, destroyed the 
provisions, and returned to their camp. The names of the twelve men 
who sacrificed their lives in this unfortunate expedition are David 
Kreeps, Zadock Mendinall, Isaac Perkins, James Milton, Tyrus M. 
Childs, Joseph B. Parris, Bird W. Ellis, John Walters, Joseph Draper, 
James Doty, Gideon Munson, and Captain Adams. 

The effect of this defeat and rout was depressing in the extreme. 
The volunteers immediately began to talk of returning to their homes. 
In fact Governor Reynolds says, in "My Own Times" that he wrote 
out the order the night of the defeat, for two thousand new troops and 
by next morning three trusted men were on their way to distribute this 
call throughout the state. The militiamen becoming impatient, Gover- 
nor Reynolds and General Atkinson plead with the men to stay at 
least twelve or fifteen days until the new levies could reach the front. 
This they finally agreed to do. General Atkinson, now in command of 
the militia and regulars, moved up Rock river, and when somewhere in 
the vicinty of the present city of Oregon or probably higher up, they 
received word of a horrible massacre of fifteen whites near Ottawa. 
This, too, was depressing, and not finding Black Hawk, General Atkin- 
son and the regulars returned to Dixon and General "Whiteside and 
Col. Zachary Taylor went in further quest of the warriors. They came 
to an abandoned camp on Sycamore creek where they found several 
things taken from Major Stillman's camp, but not finding the Indians 
the soldiers again became persistent in their determination to return 
to their farms and business. General Whiteside not being himself 
much in sympathy with further pursuit of the Indians, ordered a vote 
among all commanding officers as to what they wished to do. The~ 
votes stood about half in favor of continuing the campaign and half 
against further service. When the governor became aware of the 
demoralized spirit in the army he ordered them to march to Ottawa 
where they were discharged. 

General Atkinson and Governor Reynolds were deeply concerned 
for the safety of the frontier and in addition to the two thousand men 
called into service the night of the Stillman defeat they yet needed 
more troops. After the muster-out of the men was completed the 


governor called for volunteers and a regiment was enlisted without 
any loss of time for thirty days. Col. Jacob Fry was given command. 

Ottawa and vicinity seemed to be a kind of storm center for Indian 
depredations and many very exciting stories are told of personal en- 
counters on the frontier during the summer of 1832. The war had 
degenerated into bushwhacking, rapine, and murder. One never knew 
when a savage was at his back. It was therefore the business of this 
thirty-day regiment under Col. Jacob Fry to guard the various localities 
till the arrival of the new troops called into service the night of the 
Stillman defeat. 

There were in Colonel Fry 's regiment seven companies, one of which 
was commanded by Captain Snyder of St. Clair county. Captain 
Snyder's company was sent over in the region of Burr Oak Grove 
(called Kellogg 's Grove). The Indians were committing depredations 
in that region. On the night of June 17 he was encamped near the 
above grove. His camp was attacked that night, and the next morning 
his force went in search of the attacking parties. They finally overtook 
the Indians and killed four of them. One of Captain Snyder's men 
was mortally wounded, and while taking this wounded man to the camp 
the escort was set upon by seventy-five Indians and the wounded man 
was butchered by the savages while two more of Snyder's men were 
killed. A few regulars under Major Riley came to Captain Snyder's 
relief and the Indians fled with a loss of four dead. The thirty days 
enlistment was up and Captain Snyder's men were mustered out. 

The new levies began concentrating at Fort Wilburn near Peru, in 
June, and the task of organizing them was not an easy one. Three 
brigades were formed with Generals Alexander Posey, Milton K. Alex- 
ander, and James D. Henry in command. There were about one thou- 
sand men in each division. They were accepted by General Atkinson 
as United States troops. Governor Reynolds used good diplomacy in 
his appointments to the various positions in the army. In addition to 
the three brigades there were two or three independent organizations 
whose duty was to guard the frontier. 

Major Dement with one hundred and fifty men was sent to guard 
the region of Kellogg 's Grove while the main army moved up the Rock 
river. Major Dement and his men arrived at the Kellogg Grove on 
Saturday, June 21, and took up quarters in some old log houses which 
had been the home of Mr. O. "W. Kellogg. Upon the opening of hostili- 
ties he had moved nearer Dixon's ferry. They put their horses in a 
lot fenced in with a brush fence. Sunday night a Mr. Funk, of Mc- 
Lean county, stayed over night with the troops and reported Indians in 
the vicinity. On the morrow, twenty-five soldiers started in pursuit. 
They were drawn into the edge of the timber by straggling Indians 
when out rushed hundreds of naked savages with their faces blackened. 
The troops fled precipitately to the log huts with scarcely time enough 
to put their horses in the brush lot and get into the fort. Four dead 
were left on the field. All that day the Indians circled round, firing 
continuously into the fort. Dement lost only the four men but had 
several wounded. The Indians seeing they could do no harm to the 
men in the fort, began a slaughter of horses in the brush-fenced lot. 
Governor Reynolds says forty-seven horses were killed at the fort be- 
sides two or three on the battlefield. 

After the battle had raged an hour or so, messengers were sent to 


Dixon for reinforcements. As good fortune would have it these mes- 
sengers met General Posey, who was on his way north to the Wisconsin 
line. General Posey hurried forward and reached the fort by night 
and the Indians seeing that reinforcements had arrived, slipped away. 

The Rev. Samuel Westbrook told the writer that he was with General 
Posey 's troops and that there were sixty horses killed and that they were 
nearly all killed by one Indian who was hidden behind a tree. This In- 
dian was finally killed and the slaughter of the horses ceased. 

The next morning after the arrival of General Posey a grave was 
dug with tomahawks and knives and the four dead soldiers whose bodies 
had been mangled beyond recognition, were buried in one grave. This 
ended the war in that section. Black Hawk was present and was 
probably the commanding spirit in the attack upon Captain Snyder 
as well as the one on Major Dement. 

After his defeat at Kellogg 's Grove by Major Dement 's forces, 
Black Hawk retreated with all his people to the hills of southern Wis- 
consin. General Atkinson followed with nearly four thousand men. 
Upon reaching Burnt Village the army halted. Here there seemed so 
much indecision and lack of plan in the campaign that the volunteers 
became much discouraged. Food became scarce and desertions were 
quite the order of the day. 

After some counseling, it was decided to disperse the army to obtain 
food. A strong detachment went to Fort Winnebago, at the Wisconsin 
portage, for supplies. General Atkinson returned down Rock river to 
Kosh-Ko-Nong, General Posey to Fort Hamilton. Governor Reynolds 
came to his home in Belleville. 

The detachment which went to Fort Winnebago under General 
Dodge and General Henry, was about ready to return with provisions 
when they received word that Black Hawk was on Rock river about 
thirty-five miles above the point where General Atkinson was in camp. 
After some conferences among the officers it was decided to attack 
Black Hawk instead of returning to General Atkinson as he had ordered. 
General Henry, therefore made all preparations for what he thought 
ought to be the end of the campaign. With a very well equipped army 
of probably a thousand men or less, he started in quest of Black Hawk. 
The wily chief knew he was in danger and immediately began a retreat, 
passing by the four lakes where Wisconsin's beautiful capital is now 
situated. He was vigorously pushed by General Henry. On the bluffs 
of the Wisconsin river about twenty-five miles northwest of Madison, 
the Indians were overtaken. 

A desperate stand was made by Black Hawk, but at the end of the 
day's fighting he crossed the river leaving one hundred and sixty-eight 
of his braves dead upon the field of battle, and twenty-five more were 
found dead between the Wisconsin and the Mississippi. General Henry 
lost but one man killed and eight wounded. 

General Henry was now without provisions, deserted by his Indian 
guides, and in the wilderness. While here he received word from Gen- 
eral Atkinson to repair to the mounds some twenty miles south of west 
of Madison where the regular army would have provisions. The 
wounded were carried on stretchers to that point. After a slight rest 
the army now under General Atkinson crossed the Wisconsin at a 
deserted village called Helena, and started in pursuit of the enemy. 
Black Hawk's band was in a truly deplorable condition. They were 


living on roots, bulbs, and game such as could be had, and are said to 
have killed their horses for flesh. Nor were the soldiers in very excel- 
lent condition. They had provisions, but they slept in open air, tramped 
through swamps, climbed precipitous bluffs, and scrambled through 
briars and dense underbrush. On August 2, 1832, the army reached 
the Mississippi bluffs about forty miles on a straight line above the 
mouth of the Wisconsin river. Here was to be enacted the final scene 
of this tragedy of greed and treachery. 

The Indians had reached the above point a day or so in advance of 
the army and were busily engaged in making preparations to cross. 
In fact they had already sent some of their people over to the west side 
and were embarking their women and children in canoes to go to 
Prairie du Chien for safety. A part of them were lost on the way and 
those who reached the village were in a starving condition. While all 
this was going on, a steamboat, the Warrior, coming up the river tc 
bring supplies to General Atkinson's army, reached the camp August 
13. This vessel was prepared for battle and upon approaching the 
camp of Black Hawk, which was in the valley near the banks of the 
Mississippi, it was hailed with a white flag. The captain ordered the 
Indians to come along side in a canoe but they refused, and he then 
gave them fifteen minutes to get the women and children out of danger. 
He then fired a six-pounder into their midst and a battle of an hour 
followed. The vessel returned to Prairie du Chien and remained over 
night. As a result of this attack by the boat, twenty-three of Black 
Hawk's men lay dead in the valley. 

On the morning of the second of August the army appeared on the 
bluffs overlooking the valley and the Indian encampment. Black Hawk, 
to shield the operations which were going on for crossing the river, took 
twenty warriors and engaged the army on the bluffs and then retreated 
up the river with the purpose of misleading General Atkinson. This 
worked to perfection for the regulars, the Wisconsin contingent, and 
some of the Illinois militia set off post haste after Black Hawk leaving 
only General Henry and Major Ewing. When the commanding general 
and the troops were gone, Henry and Ewing moved down the bluffs 
and across the valley and presently discovered the Indians near the 
river bank where they had been attacked by the steamboat the day 
before. General Henry and the Indians were soon engaged and as 
General Henry's soldiers pushed forward with fixed bayonets the poor 
savages were shot down, bayoneted, or driven into the river. There were 
about three hundred braves, and in Henry's little band about three 
hundred soldiers. During all this time General Atkinson had been de- 
coyed off up the river and returned only when General Henry had 
finished the work of annihilating the Indians. It is estimated that one 
hundred and fifty Indians lost their lives in trying to swim the river, 
one hundred and fifty were killed, a few got safely across to the west 
side, fifty women and children were captured, while Black Hawk and 
about twenty warriors escaped up the river. 


The war was now considered ended and the Illinois soldiers were 
marched to Dixon, where they were mustered out and thence returned 
to their homes. Gen. Winfield Scott had been ordered from Fortress 


Monroe on the 7th of August, 1832, to assist in the restoration of 
order and in the punishment of the insolent savages. He made tne 
trip from the seaboard to Chicago in eighteen days the distance being 
one thousand five hundred miles. 

The Asiatic cholera broke out in his army and he did not take any 
part in the '"war." Black Hawk finally was induced to come to Fort 
Armstrong (Rock Island) to sign a treaty, but the parties of the treaty 
were conveyed to St. Louis where the Sac and Fox Indians ceded every- 
thing east of the Mississippi river to the United States. Black Hawk 
was kept a prisoner in Fortress Monroe a while in the spring of 1833. 
Later he was given a brief visit to the principal cities in New England, 
after which he was returned to General Street, the Indian agent at 
Fort Armstrong. He was put under the wardship of Keokuk, which 
Black Hawk considered a great indignity. He died at the age of 
seventy-one years. Black Hawk was an Indian with more than ordinary 
power. He was a man whose thoughts occupied a very high plane, as 
did those of other Indian chiefs, but he was shrewd, quick to see an 
advantage, persistent, revengeful. His history has been written by 
two or three different writers. 

The war closed with the battle of Bad Axe on the second of August, 
1832. The soldiers returned to their homes and quiet was restored. 
The general government bore the expenses of the war which are said to 
have reached $2,000,000. There were killed about two hundred and fifty 
regulars, and about the same number of militia men and settlers; the 
Indians suffered a loss of probably three hundred. 

There has been some question as to whether this war might not 
have been averted. It was a good deal to ask Indians who had cleared 
seven hundred acres of land and had it in cultivation, to move off and 
go into a new country. The conduct of the whites in encroaching upon 
the lands, village, and burying ground in the vicinity of Saukenuk 
was wholly inexcusable. Moses says: "The real cause of the war 
existed in that almost universal detestation in which the Indians were 
held by the pioneers. Their presence could not be tolerated, and 
whether the lands occupied by them were needed by the whites or not, 
the cry was 'The Indians must go!' ' 

The "war" made several reputations. For quite a number of years 
it was a passport to official position to be able to say, "I was a soldier 
in the Black Hawk war." General Henry, who seems to have been 
providentially favored in the war never lived to reap political profit 
as a reward for his services. He was a native of Pennslyvania and 
came to Edwardsville in 1822. He secured an education under very 
difficult circumstances, working as a mechanic by day and attending 
night schools in the evening. In 1826 he removed to Springfield and 
was shortly elected sheriff of Sangamon county. It was as an officer 
that Governor Reynolds' attention was called to him. After the war 
his health failing, he visited New Orleans for medical attention, and 
for the benefit the climate might do, but nothing availed and he died 
of consumption, March 4, 1834. It is said that before the war he was 
supposed to have had a sound constitution but that the hardships in- 
cident to two years of military life undermined his health and he died 
as above stated. His modesty is attested by the fact that he did not 
let the people of New Orleans know that he was the real hero in the 
Black Hawk war. 


Among other men who made praiseworthy records was Governor 
Reynolds himself, who never tired in his devotion to his duty as the 
commander-in-chief of the militia. Thomas Ford and Joseph Duncan 
both became governors of Illinois. Abraham Lincoln and Jefferson 
Davis were soldiers in the Black Hawk war. Quite a number of men 
who became prominent state officers were officers or soldiers in the war. 


During the second half of Governor Reynold's term as chief execu- 
tive there was little of general public interest. The state, by the 
apportionment based on the census of 1830, was entitled to three con- 
gressmen. This apportionment was made in time for the selection at 
the regular election in August, 1832. The three men selected were 
Zadoc Casey, Charles Slade, and Joseph Duncan. The election for 
members of the general assembly occurred at the same time. The leg- 
islature met in December. The governor's message dealt somewhat 
with national politics, since Jackson and the South Carolina milliners 
were in the public eye. Reynolds urged upon the attention of the gen- 
eral assembly the cause of education, the Illinois and Michigan canal, 
or a railroad instead, and the penitentiary system. The house of rep- 
resentatives early in this session brought charges against Theophilus 
W. Smith, one of the justices of the supreme court. He was formally 
impeached, and tried before the senate, but was acquitted. The legis- 
lature adjourned without accomplishing very much in the way of 
needed legislation. 

In the summer of 1834 there was another congressional election. 
And although Reynold's, time as governor would not be out till De- 
cember, 1834, yet he announced himself a candidate for congress and 
was elected. The lieutenant governor, Zadoc Casey, had resigned two 
years before to go to congress and now Reynolds resigned as governor 
and the burden and honor of the chief magistracy fell upon the shoul- 
ders of Gen. W. L. D. Ewing, who served as governor fifteen days and 
until the inauguration of Governor Duncan. 

Governor Ewing was a Kentuckian. He came to Illinois prior to 
1820, and held a federal appointment in this state under President 
Monroe ; served in the legislature, and as brigadier general of the ' ' Spy 
Battalion" in the Black Hawk war. He was elected president pro tern 
of the senate in the ninth general assembly and thus became the con- 
stitutional successor of Governor Reynolds upon the latter 's resigna- 
tion. Governor Ewing later served in congress as representative and 
as senator. He also held the office of auditor. He died in 1846. 



Joseph Duncan was a Kentuckian, having been born at Paris in that 
state, February 23, 1794. He is recorded as a sergeant in the Illinois 
militia, in Capt. Nathan Chambers' company of 30-day men in the 
War of 1812. He served from April 12 to May 12, 1813. He is also 
put down as a lieutenant in the second regiment, Samuel Judy, colo- 
nel, which served in the War of 1812. He is also said to have fought 
bravely with Colonel Croghan in the defense of Port Stephenson in 

At the close of the War of 1812, he settled at the "big hill," now 
called "Fountain Bluff," in Jackson county, "In 1814, there was quite 
a large accession to this county. Joseph Duncan, Dr. John G. Dun- 
can, Polly Ann Duncan, old Mrs. Moore, their mother, and her son Ben, 
with several blacks, settled here. Joe Duncan built the best house in 
the county, near the river and under the bluff, and it was called the 
'White House' as long as it stood. He renovated the mill, and it did 
considerable business. The Duncans lived there several years. Dr. 
Duncan died and was buried there." The foundations of the mill 
dam could be seen a few years ago. Here he occupied himself in the 
business enterprises common to those pioneer days. In 1823 he was 
appointed a major general of militia. In 1824 he was elected to the 
State senate from Jackson county. In 1825 he introduced the first 
legislation on public schools in the state. It was also the most rational 
that was suggested for many years. Mr. Duncan was elected to con- 
gress in 1826, took his seat March 4, 1827, and served continuously till 
he came home to be inaugurated in 1834. 


The canvass which preceded the election in August, 1834, was rather 
a tame affair. Mr. Duncan's opponent was Mr. Kinney who had op- 
posed Governor Reynolds in 1830, and who had served as lieutenant 
governor with Governor Edwards from 1826 to 1830. 

Mr. Duncan remained in Washington during the summer of 1834. 

Vol. 113 



He carried on his canvass by sending out circulars and letters. His 
opponent, Mr. Kinney, carried on his canvass personally, as he had in 
previous campaigns. Duncan's vote was 17,830, while Kinney 's was 
10,224, with 5,000 scattered. 

Governor Duncan was naturally a Democrat. He had been a 
friend to Jackson, but several things worked together to alienate him 
from the hero of New Orleans. Jackson at the time was working the 
destruction of the U. S. bank and in his eagerness to do this he often 
failed to do things which would hold his friends. Mr. Duncan was very 
much interested in two measures, one an appropriation to render navig- 
able the Wabash river, the other an appropriation to improve the Chi- 
cago harbor. In addition nearly every congressman was deeply inter- 
ested in congressional aid in constructing great highways from the 
Atlantic seaboard to the region of the Mississippi river. Jackson vetoed 
the two bills, the one for the Wabash and the one for the Chicago har- 
bor, and refused aid to the internal improvement scheme at national 

By the time of the canvass, Mr. Duncan was completely at cross 
purposes with the "Military Chieftain." And it is not at all improb- 
able that he remained in Washington in order that he might not be 
under the necessity of letting the people know that the breach was as 
wide as it was in reality. The Whigs knew of the breach and so did 
the leaders among the Jackson men, but the former kept still and the 
latter were not believed by the great mass of Jackson men. 

By the time Governor Duncan took up the duties of his position, it 
was generally known that he was not in harmony with Jackson. And 
although the legislature was for "Old Hickory," its members and Gov- 
ernor Duncan seem to have had about the same general notions of what 
was needful for the upholding of the interests of Illinois. 


There were two important subjects upon which he recommended 
legislation one was banking, the other internal improvement. On the 
latter subject he recommended the laying out of roads now, before the 
country was settled, so that they might run on the most direct line from 
one point to another. In response to this suggestion the legislature auth- 
orized the establishment of forty-two state roads and at a later special 
session forty more. In addition, a law was passed authorizing county 
commissioners to establish roads within the limits of their counties. 
This public road legislation was only an earnest of what was in store 
for the state within the next few years, and since the legislation on 
each of these topics, banking and internal improvements, was of such 
far reaching importance, it will be well to consider one at a time. 

We have in a previous chapter followed the financial legislation up 
to the year 1831, the expiration of the charter of the State bank, which 
was granted in 1821. And in this we have seen that the project ended 
very disastrously for the state. The last act in this ten-year drama 
was to borrow $100,000 to redeem the outstanding issue of the defunct 
bank, and anticipating that this would not be sufficient to meet the en- 
tire obligation of the state, it was provided that the state bonds might 
be issued bearing six per cent interest to meet the remainder. 

The legislature readily agreed with the governor on the value of 


banks when he said ' ' banks may be made useful in society. ' ' It should 
be remembered that the members of the general assembly were not 
elected with any idea that such a subject would be before them. It 
was therefore quite a surprise to the members of the legislature, as well 
as to the people, when they found themselves absorbing a great corpora- 
tion with millions of capital. A bill was introduced which created a 
State bank with a capital of $1,500,000 with the privilege of adding 
another $1,000,000 to the first named sum if the legislature in its wis- 
dom saw fit so to do. As a sort of offset against taxation, the bank was 
to pay as a tax to the state one-half of one per cent of its capital actually 
paid in, but was to be subject to no other taxation. Another bill pro- 
vided for the charter of the old Shawneetown bank with a capital of 
$300,000. The bill creating the State bank was passed with difficulty. 
One representative agreed to vote for the bill if its friends would guar- 
antee to pass a law taxing the lands held by non-residents higher than 
that held by the citizens of the state. Another who was opposed to the 
law creating the bank, suddenly became a convert to the bank and voted 
for the measure, and the next day he was elected a county attorney, 
the election to such offices falling to the legislature. 

One million four hundred thousand dollars of the capital of the 
State bank was to be subscribed by individuals while the state reserved 
$100,000 for itself. The bank was one of issue and deposit. The bank 
was to be managed by a board of directors consisting of nine, one of 
whom should be president. The principal bank was to be located in 
Springfield with a branch at Vandalia. The stock was subscribed 
quickly, provision being made in the charter that the subscription 
books must remain open in this state for twenty days and that $5 in 
cash must be deposited with the subscription of each share of $100. 
Another clause prevented any one person from subscribing for large 
blocks of the stock, but a clique headed by some people interested in 
Alton, got men over the state to authorize the purchase of stock by this 
clique and then transferred these shares to the Alton boomers and in 
this way Godfrey, Gillman & Co., of Alton, Thos. Mather, of Kaskaskia, 
and others came to own a controlling share of the stock. 

The bank management with Thos. Mather, president, attempted to 
boost Alton as a great market and distributing point and thus to check 
the growing power of St. Louis in the Mississippi valley. The lead 
mines of Galena and adjacent regions were very important at this time. 
All the trade, however, was centered in St. Louis. The Alton interest 
invested many thousands of dollars in the mines and in their product 
and thus "cornered" the market. They held the lead for big prices 
which were never realized and thus the Alton concerns lost very heavily. 
This involved the bank. Ford says he thinks the bank lost a million 
dollars in the venture. There was one arrangement by which the bank 
could loan on real estate mortgages and in this way hundreds and prob- 
ably thousands of the small farmers borrowed money, put it into im- 
provements, and when the hard times of 1837 came they could not meet 
their notes and their farms were taken in by the bank and sold under 
the hammer. 


Of course a great concern like this State bank could not escape an 
alliance with politics. Politics and business are so often joined that it 

By courtesy of John M. Lansden 



is a rare thing to see a business enterprise that does not get caught in 
the toils of the politicians. The period through which we are now pass- 
ing, say from 1830 to 1837, was one fraught with a vital national ques- 
tion. Jackson was uncompromisingly opposed to the United States 
bank, chartered in 1816. "When he became President in 1829, one of his 
chief aims was to crush this bank. Not much was accomplished in the 
first term, but a bill to re-charter the bank was vetoed by Jackson, and 
the congress was unable to pass it over his head. Those who could 
look ahead saw that the days of banking with the United States as a co- 
partner were numbered. State banks must eventually carry on the 
business of the country. There was, therefore, great activity in legis- 
lation in all the states preparatory to the death of the old U. S. Bank 
in 1836. To hasten the demise of the U. S. Bank, Jackson, taking ad- 
vantage of a clause in the charter which permitted the secretary of the 
treasury to withdraw the deposits of the general government from the 
U. S. Bank, and put them in State banks, issued an order to carry this 
contingent clause into effect. 

The State banks now looked hopefully forward to the receipt of 
large sums of government deposits in their vaults. The State bank of 
Illinois was no exception. But as is so often the case, a very trifling 
thing, apparently, prevented this bank from sharing in the "distribu- 
tion of the spoils." 

In the general assembly when this bill was on the passage, there was 
no division on politics. The bill was prepared by Judge Theophilus 
Smith, of the supreme bench. Judge Smith was an ardent Jackson 
Democrat and of course was a strong believer in state banks. But in 
the organization of the State Bank of Illinois it so happened that a 
majority of the directors were Whigs, as were also the majority of its 
officers. The leading Democrats of the state did not hesitate to say 
now that the charter was unconstitutional. So when the bank asked 
the secretary of the treasury for a deposit of a portion of the govern- 
ment funds, the Democratic leaders had so poisoned the minds of the 
treasury officials at Washington, that they refused to favor the mana- 
ger of the bank with a deposit. 

Just at this time, too, it will be remembered that Jackson put forth 
what we know as the "Specie Circular," which was an order that re- 
ceivers at the land offices were to receive no more state bank issues 
only gold and silver. This made it necessary if a man had $200 in 
state bank issue, and wished to enter 160 acres of land, that he should 
go to the bank and present this paper for redemption, and with the 
specie he could enter the land. And when the receiver at the public 
land office received the $200 in specie, he was not allowed to deposit 
it in the State Bank of Illinois, but must forward it to some state bank 
that was in good standing. This worked, as a recent statesman said, in 
the "endless chain" order. The specie was constantly being drawn 
from the bank vaults. 


On December 7, 1835, the legislature met in special session. The 
law which provided for the loan of $500,000 on the canal could not be 
consummated. So at this extra session a loan of five hundred thousand 
dollars was ordered on the credit of the state. The governor at this 


extra session recommended that the state take the remaining one million 
dollars of the stock in the State Bank. The legislature did not take 
kindly to this, but did order a subscription to the one hundred thousand 
dollars of stock reserved for the state in the charter. A clause in the 
original charter provided that at any time upon presentation of its issue 
by holders thereof, the bank should have ten days in which to redeem it, 
but at this special session the time was lengthened to sixty days. 

When the legislature met in December, 1836, the makeup of the 
two houses was not different from that of the previous general assem- 
bly, but they were now deeply interested in what appeared to be the 
onward movement of the state. The capital of the State Bank was in- 
creased to $3,500,000 and that of the Bank of Illinois (the bank at 
Shawneetown) was increased to $1,700,000. This increase in capital 
amounted to $3,100,000, all of which was taken by the state. It was 
expected that part of this stock would be paid for out of the surplus 
revenue which the general government was distributing about this time. 
The balance was to be paid for with the sale of state bonds. 

The whole financial interest of the state was now put into the hands 
of a body of men known as the fund commissioners. These fund com- 
missioners were authorized to subscribe, on behalf of the state, for this 
increase in the capital stock of the two banks. The increase amounted 
to $3,100,000. The state had now become a bona fide partner in the 
two banks and owned a controlling interest in each of them. It was 
expected that the bonds which would be offered for sale, the proceeds 
of which were pay for the stock, would command such a premium, at 
least ten per cent, that it would not only pay the interest on the bonds 
the first year, but that the interest fund would be considerably en- 
larged. Likewise it was really believed that the profit from the invest- 
ment of over three millions in the bank would add greatly to the inter- 
est fund. 

When the fund commissioners offered the bonds on the market they 
could not be sold at a premium nor at par, and if sold at all they must 
be sold at a discount. Rather than have our own bonds go on the mar- 
ket at a discount, the two banks agreed to take $2,665,000 worth of 

The Shawneetown bank, called the Bank of Illinois, effected the sale 
of $900,000 worth of the bonds, but the $1,766,000 worth taken by the 
State Bank could not be disposed of. In the spring of 1837 the banks of 
the whole country began to suspend specie payment. The state bank 
law contained a clause which provided that its charter should be for- 
feited in case it suspended specie payment for more than sixty days 
at any one time. The demands for specie grew and the situation was 
getting critical. 


The State Bank had now become so closely connected with the inter- 
ests of the state, it being the depository of the funds of the gigantic 
internal improvement schemes, that the state must maintain it at all 
hazards. If the bank should go down so must the state's great enter- 
prises. In this critical situation the fund commissioners appealed to 
the governor to call an extra session of the legislature for the purpose 
of legalizing the suspension of specie payment. The governor readily 


complied with their request and on the 10th of July, 1837, the legisla- 
ture convened in extra session. The legislature also readily complied 
with the demand for the legalization of the suspension of specie pay- 
ment. The governor now embraced the opportunity to appeal to the 
law makers to repeal the legislation which was driving the state to 
financial ruin, but all in vain ; the legislature had set itself to the task 
of putting Illinois in the front rank in the matter of its internal im- 
provements. "It was plain that nothing could be done to arrest the 
evil for two years more. In the meantime all considerate persons hoped 
the public insanity would subside, that the people would wake to re- 
flection and see the absurdity of the public policy." 

It was now necessary that the bank should go into politics. Self- 
preservation was justification. In national politics the Jackson Demo- 
crats had persistently opposed the U. S. Bank and favored the State 
Bank. The Whigs, or those anti-Jackson Democrats who eventually 
made up the Whig party, favored the U. S. Bank and opposed the State 
Bank. But in Illinois the rule seemed to work the other way, for the 
anti-Jackson people or the Whigs favored the State Bank, while the 
Democrats or Jackson people were bitterly opposed to it. It was there- 
fore quite natural for the bank to take such part in the legislation as 
would result in advantage to itself. Not only was the bank involved in 
politics but its life seemed to depend upon continuing the far reaching 
projects for internal improvements. 

It is very difficult to trace the bank from 1837 to its downfall on 
account of its intricate relationship with the internal improvement 
schemes. However, in a session of the legislature, which met in Decem- 
ber, 1838, a law was passed which legalized the suspension of specie pay- 
ment till the end of the next regular or special session of the legislature. 
The next session was a special session called just before the constitu- 
tional time for the assembling of the legislature in regular session. In. 
this special as well as in the regular session which followed there was a 
very bitter fight on the State Bank. The enemies of the bank knew that 
if the law permitting suspension were not extended that the charter of 
the bank would be annulled since they knew the bank was not able to 
redeem its issue as fast as presented. If a sine die adjournment be 
taken at end of special session, then the charter would be annulled, but 
if they took a recess and began the regular session the friends might 
succeed in tiding it over. Those in favor of the sine die adjournment 
seemed to be in the majority, and to break a quorum the members who 
were against that kind of adjournment made a break for liberty by 
jumping through the windows, the door having been locked. This inci- 
dent occurred while the sessions were being held in the old Presbyterian 
church in Springfield, the capital having been removed to that city, 
and the new capitol building not being ready for occupancy. Enough 
of the Whigs were prevented from escaping by the opponents of the 
bank and a sine die adjournment was taken. 

Notwithstanding this apparent victory of the enemies of the bank, 
in the regular session beginning December, 1840, the bank won the 
good will of the majority and considerable legislation was passed which 
favored it. 



In 1843 the legislature passed a law ' ' to diminish the state debt and 
put the State Bank into liquidation.". The bank was given four years 
to wind up its business. Now the State Bank held $2,000,000 worth of 
bonds and other forms of state indebtedness, while the state held $2,- 
000,000 of stock in the State Bank. 

This law to "diminish the state debt, etc.," provided that the bank 
should turn over to the governor the bonds, scrip, etc., to the amount 
of $2,050,000, while the governor was to deliver to the bank an equal 
amount of bank stock. This still left the state with $50,000 worth of 
bank stock. A similar law provided for the cancellation of $1,000,000 
worth of state bonds held by the Shawneetown bank by surrendering 
$1,000,000 worth of stock in that bank. Thus the state reduced its 
indebtedness to the extent of $3,050,000. 

Much of the history of the banking business in Illinois cannot be 
condensed into a single volume history of our state, and we must con- 
tent ourselves with the foregoing facts which give the general features 
of a very unfortunate system of financiering. 


In subjects so organically connected with the whole life of the people 
as roads, bridges, railroads, canals, and banks, it is extremely difficult 
to find the origin of any one of them. The fact is there is no formal be- 
ginning. Roads and trails were the earliest care of the permanent set- 
tlers. Fords, ferries, and bridges were provided at a very early date. 
But it is probably due to Governor Reynolds -to say that he is to be 
given credit for first calling the attention of the legislature to the need 
of internal improvement. Governor Reynolds, in his inaugural mes- 
sage, transmitted to the general assembly in December, 1830, had this 
to say on the general subject of internal improvement: 

"The internal improvement of the country demands, and will re- 
ceive your particular attention. There cannot be an appropriation of 
money within the exercise of your legislative power, that will be more 
richly paid to the citizen, than that for the improvement of the coun- 


Governor Reynolds was clearly of opinion that the general govern- 
ment ought to carry on a system of national improvements, but he was 
as clearly of opinion that there were certain local improvements that 
ought to be fostered by the state. He urged attention to the report of 
the canal commissioners and hoped that the attention of congress might 
be directed to the national importance of the enterprise. "The im- 
provement of the navigation of the rivers adjoining and within this 
state, will be the subject of your serious consideration. Those improve- 
ments which are local to our state will receive your fostering care, so 
far as our means will justify without embarrassment to our people. 
The general good of the present and future population seems to require 
the permanent establishment of three public roads in this state extend- 
ing from its southern to its northern limits. (1) One to commence on 


the Ohio river near its junction with the Mississippi, and extending 
north, on the western side of the state, by the principal towns on the 
most direct route to Galena. (2) Another to commence at Shawnee- 
town passing north, through the center of the state, to accommodate the 
present and future population, to the lead mines. (3) And one other, 
to commence on the Wabash river, near its confluence with the Ohio, 
passing through the principal towns on the eastern side of the state by 
Danville to Chicago, and thence to the lead mines. ' ' 

Governor Reynolds believed the general government might be in- 
duced to construct them and that then the counties might be required 
to keep them in repair. His idea was that a good road passing through 
an undeveloped region would be a very potent factor in the develop- 
ment of such a section. He specially called attention to the road lead- 
ing from Vincennes through the state to St. Louis, saying it was much 

A careful study of the above modest recommendation and simple 
suggestions will prepare us to some extent to begin a thorough study 
of "Internal Improvement" as it was known in later years. 

Governor Duncan was inaugurated in December, 1834. The effects 
of the Black Hawk war were disappearing and population was moving 
rapidly into the northern counties. Governor Duncan was specially 
interested in a public school system, in the Illinois and Michigan canal, 
and in a system of internal improvement. No action on this last sug- 
gestion was taken by the legislature of 1834-5. The second session of 
this general assembly convened in December, 1835, and to this special 
session Governor Duncan sent his message. In it he says there is a 
very general demand for other internal improvements besides the 
canal. "When we look abroad and see the extensive lines of inter-com- 
munication penetrating almost every section of our western states, 
when we see the canal boat and locomotive bearing, with seeming tri- 
umph, the rich productions of the interior to the rivers, lakes and ocean, 
almost annihilating time, burthep, and space, what patriotic bosom does 
not beat high with a laudable ambition to give Illinois her full share of 
those advantages which are adorning her sister states and which her 
magnificent providence seems to invite by the wonderful adaptation of 
the whole country to such improvements." And then, as if fearful 
that this oratory would overcome their conservatism, he adds: "While 
I would urge the most liberal support of all such measures as tending 
with perfect certainty to increase the wealth and prosperity of the 
state, I would at the same time most respectfully suggest the propriety of 
leaving the construction of all such works wherein it can be done con- 
sistently with the general interest, to individual enterprise. ' ' This was 
indeed wholesome advice and had it been taken the state would have 
greatly profited thereby. But internal improvement was in the air. 
The subject was receiving unusual interest in Ohio, Pennsylvania, 
New York and Maryland. In 1835 there were twenty-two railroads in 
operation in the United States, two of which were west of the Alle- 
ghanies. In addition there were several canals, beside the great Erie 

The members of the legislature were not yet converted to the theory 
of state ownership of public utilities, and so they did no more than to 
charter a great number of railroads, but they did come to the relief of 
the canal and ordered the issue of half a million dollars worth of bonds 


on the credit of the state for the purpose of furthering this enterprise. 
The message of the governor seems later to have awakened great inter- 
est in internal improvement. 

The city of Chicago was now growing with amazing rapidity. The 
lots which were a part of the capital of the canal project were bring- 
ing big prices and selling freely. The state was taking on the same 
spirit of enterprise. Towns and cities were laid off and the lots sold 
at auction for extravagant prices. Five million dollars worth of land 
was sold in the year 1836. This meant increased immigration and an 
abundant inflow of money into the state. All the people were full of 
the idea of a great expansion of population, business, and wealth. All 
through the summer of 1836, there were all sorts of stories afloat in 
the air of what was just ahead, and to keep pace with this the need 
and advantages of a system of internal improvement were discussed 

It was argued that Illinois is unsurpassed in fertility of soil, in va- 
riety of climate, and agricultural products; timber was plentiful, all 
that was needed was distribution. Her situation relative to the Lakes 
and the Mississippi was superior to that of any other state west of the 
Alleghanies. All that was needed was more people and more enter- 
prises. Public meetings were held in which all these facts were dis- 

A move was eventually set on foot for a state convention which was 
appointed to meet in Vandalia at the time of the meeting of the legisla- 
ture early in December, 1836. Delegates were appointed from the sev- 
eral counties and much interest was manifested. 

A new legislature was also to be elected in August, 1836, and as 
the candidates for the legislature went about among the people or 
spoke from public platforms, the subject of internal improvement was 
more or less discussed. Another matter which added fuel to the flames 
already started was the beginning of the work on the Illinois and 
Michigan Canal. On July 4, 1836, the first ground was broken in Chi- 
cago on this famous waterway. The event was accompanied by a public 
celebration in Chicago. The Hon. Theophilus W. Smith, a former canal 
commissioner, read the Declaration of Independence ; and Dr. William 
B. Egan delivered an able and appropriate address on the occasion. 

Ford in his history of Illinois, says, however, that the great mass of 
the people and more particularly those who resided in the country were 
not in the whirl of excitement. It was chiefly in the towns that the 
people were wrought up. 

The legislature met the first part of December, and at the same time 
the convention to consider internal improvements assembled at Van- 
dalia. The make-up of the legislature was quite remarkable. Among 
those elected to this general assembly, one became president, one a de- 
feated candidate for the same office, six became United States senators, 
eight congressmen, three state supreme judges, and still others reached 
high state and national positions. Many members of the legislature 
took part in the deliberations of the internal improvement convention. 
This convention soon finished its business and adjourned. The result 
of its deliberations were, first, a bill which it was expected some friend 
would introduce into the legislature ; and second, a memorial or plea 
setting forth the advantages, costs, incomes, etc., of this improvement 
venture. In addition, the convention selected a lobbying committee that 


should remain in Vandalia during the session and see that timid mem- 
bers did not fail to do their duty. 

The governor's message was a conservative document for such times. 
He was heartily in favor of the idea of internal improvements, but was 
quite doubtful as to the advisability of the state's undertaking the en- 
tire financial obligation. He was willing that the state should assume 
a third or a half of the responsibility but was not favorable to the as- 
sumption of the whole burden by the state. 

After the session was fairly open, the bill prepared by the conven- 
tion and the accompanying memorial were presented to the house. Reso- 
lutions were introduced by Stephen A. Douglas favoring state owner- 
ship. The subject was referred to the committee on internal improve- 
ment, the chairman ,of which was Edward Smith, of Wabash county. 


The bill which had been kindly prepared by the convention and pre- 
sented to the legislature for its endorsement and modification by the 
house, provided for the following internal improvements, and set aside 
the amounts opposite for the carrying out of the same : 

Improvement of the Wabash, the Illinois, Rock river, Kas- 

kaskia, and Little Wabash, and Western Mail Route $ 400,000 

Railroad, Vincennes to St. Louis 250,000 

Railroad, Cairo to Galena 3,500,000 

Railroad, Alton to Mt. Carmel 1,600,000 

Railroad, Quincy to Indiana line 1,800,000 

Railroad, Shelbyville to Terre Haute 650,000 

Railroad, Peoria to Warsaw 700,000 

Railroad, Alton to Central Railroad 600,000 

Railroad, Belleville to Mt. Carmel 150,000 

Railroad, Bloomington to Pekin 350,000 

To pacify disappointed counties 200,000 

Total $10,200.000 

This bill which provided for the construction of so many railroads, 
was sent to the governor, who, together with the council of revision, 
vetoed the measure. But when it came back to the general assembly it 
was speedily passed over the veto. This bill which looked to the bur- 
dening of the state to the amount of over ten millions of dollars was not 
the only measure of importance before the legislature. There were at 
least three other important matters that must be considered. They 
were, a bill to increase the capital stock of the state bank $2,000,000, 
and that of the Shawneetown bank $1,400,000 ; a proposition to re-locate 
the state capital ; and also a proposition to enlarge the issue of bonds 
for the completion of the Illinois and Michigan canal. These four 
measures were fraught with grave consequences to the future of the 


It can be readily seen that in this session of the legislature there 
will be conflict of interest, and it will only be by considerable amount 
of "swapping" of votes that the several measures can be carried. For 


instance, the delegation from Sangamon county consisted of nine men, 
two in the senate and seven in the house. They had been instructed to 
vote for internal improvement, but more especially to secure the removal 
of the state capital, and to secure its location in Springfield. This lat- 
ter problem had been intrusted to Lincoln, who, it seems performed 
his task with eminent success. When the vote was finally reached 
Springfield, Jacksonville, Vandalia, Peoria, Alton, Illiopolis, besides 
smaller towns, were candidates for the honor. Four ballots were taken 
before the selection was finally made. 

Springfield was selected and every one recognized the fine hand of 
Abraham Lincoln in the result. In a later session of the legislature 
charges were informally preferred against the "Long Nine" who, it 
was claimed, had secured the removal of the capital to Springfield 
through corrupt means. But probably nothing worse was done than to 


"swap" votes with some of the members who were not getting out of 
the internal improvement scheme as much as they thought they ought 
to have. The names of the group of men known as the "Long Nine," 
were A. G. Herndon and Job Fletcher, in the senate ; in the house, 
Abraham Lincoln, Ninian W. Edwards, John Dawson, Andrew McCor- 
mick, Dan Stone, William F. Elkins, and Robert L. Wilson. Their total 
height was fifty-four feet averaging exactly six feet each. 

We have digressed from the improvement scheme in order to call 
attention to the removal of the capital; and now let us return to the 
main subject. The improvement bill as reported, amended, and passed, 
contemplated the expenditure of considerably more than $10,000,000. 

This money was to be raised by issuing bonds which it was confi- 
dently expected would sell at a handsome premium. General Linder, 
who, in later years, wrote reminiscences of this period, says: "The en- 
thusiastic friends of the measure maintained that, instead of there 
being any difficulty in obtaining a loan of fifteen or twenty millions 
authorized to be borrowed, our bonds would go like hot cakes and be 
sought after by the Rothschilds and Baring brothers, and others of 
that stamp ; and that the premiums which we should obtain from them 


would range from fifty to one hundred per cent and that the premium 
itself would be sufficient to construct most of the important works, 
leaving the principal sum to go into our treasury and leave the people 
free from taxation for ages to come." 


When this bill for internal improvement reached the council of 
revision, it was promptly disapproved and the bill was returned to the 
house. The council stated that "such works can only be made safely 
and economically in a free government, by citizens or by independent 
corporations, aided or authorized by the government." But the bill 
rejected by the council of revision was passed by both houses of the leg- 
islature and there was nothing left for the governor to do but to carry 
it into effect according to its own provision. 

The act provided for the appointment of a board of three fund 
commissioners, who should negotiate all loans, sign and deliver bonds, 
and have charge of all moneys which should be received therefor. They 
should also pay out this money upon the proper orders. The law pro- 
vided that these fund commissioners should be "practical and experi- 
enced financiers. ' ' The three men selected by the legislature to fill these 
responsible places were Charles Oakley, M. M. Rawlings, and Thomas 
Mather. There was another board created, known as the board of pub- 
lic works, consisting of seven members, one from each judicial district. 
It was the duty of this board to locate, superintend, and construct all 
public works except the canal which was in the hands of a commission 
of three. The first board of public works consisted of Murray McCon- 
nell, William Kinney, Elijah Willard, Milton K. Alexander, Joel 
Wright, James W. Stephenson, and Ebenezer Peck. 

In the summer of 1837 the fund commissioners went to their task of 
issuing bonds and offering them for sale. With the help of the old 
United States Bank, which was at that time winding up its business, 
they were able to place a considerable quantity of the bonds at par. 
This money was now at the disposal of the board of public works and 
the improvements were begun in many places. This was the beginning 
of a very flourishing period. 

Money became plentiful, work was abundant, and hopes were high. 
Just at this time the financial crash which followed Jackson's term of 
office, was coming on and the fund commissioners were not able to place 
any more bonds in this country at par, and in London they could only 
be placed at nine per cent discount. It is said that this coming finan- 
cial crash was hopefully looked to by the opponents of the internal im- 
provement plan as a means of stopping the wild schemes of the "sys- 
tem. ' ' But in spite of the hard times which were approaching the fund 
commissioners secured cash to the amount of $5,668,000 by December, 

The legislature that had projected these vast schemes of improve- 
ment had hardly adjourned in the early summer of 1837 when the mem- 
bers were called in extra session to legalize the suspension of specie 
payment by the State Bank. At the opening of this special session 
which met July 10, 1837, the governor in his message very earnestly 
recommended the repeal of the internal improvement legislation which 
had just passed at the previous sitting of the legislature. He said that 


the disasters which had already fallen upon the commercial world sug- 
gested the necessity of escaping from the perils of a system which could 
only be fraught with evil. But the legislature paid no heed to this 
wholesome advice. All through the year 1837-8 the fund commissioners 
were busy negotiating loans. 



A very large share of the history of Illinois is inseparably con- 
nected with the subject of slavery. It has already been shown that 
slavery existed in what is now the state of Illinois, since the coming 
of Phillip Renault in 1719. The French slaves were the negroes and 
mulattoes whose ancestors were those Guinea negroes brought from 
the West Indies, by Renault in the above mentioned year. In the 
latter part of the eighteenth century and the first part of the nine- 
teenth, slavery existed in Illinois, by what was known as the 
indenture laws. 


In 1818 in the constitutional convention, slavery was a subject 
which engaged the most earnest and thoughtful attention of the dele- 
gates. In 1820-3 the Missouri Compromise, although a national mat- 
ter, came close to the political life of Illinois. The senators in con- 
gress from Illinois did all they could to further the interests of slavery 
in that great contest. From 1820 to 1824 the state was a seething 
cauldron of bitterness and strife over the question of introducing 
slavery into Illinois by constitutional enactment. Locally, the slavery 
question was not prominent in Illinois for several years after the 
great convention struggle in 1824. But from 1830 to 1840 the sub- 
ject was constantly before the national congress and the public mind 
was greatly agitated by the discussions in and out of the halls of 
national legislation. 

It has been said that the Missouri Compromise greatly pacified the 
public mind on the slavery question. It may have done so for a short 
space of time, but the pacification was in no sense a permanent one. 
In fact public sentiment in neither north nor south was crystallized 
as early as 1830. In the year 1826, it is said more than a hundred 
anti-slavery societies existed in the slave states, and this number is 
said to have been three times as many as existed in the north. 

The agitation of the slavery question by such publications as those 
by Lundy, Birney, and Garrison, resulted in the formation of the Na- 
tional Anti-Slavery Society in Philadelphia in 1833. This society be- 



gan an active campaign for the abolition of slavery. They sent 
pamphlets, hand bills, and newspapers broadcast into slave territory. 
This greatly incensed the slave holders and their friends. In New 
York the postmaster took from the mail, anti-slavery matter and de- 
stroyed it. So also did the postmaster at Charleston, South Carolina. 
This conduct was reported to the postmaster general, Amos Kendall, 
and he approved of this open violation of the law. Andrew Jackson, 
in his message to congress, asked that congress might pass a law 
which would prevent the passage "through the mails of incendiary 
publications intended to instigate the slaves to insurrection." Anti- 
slavery meetings were broken up in many northern cities by those 
who bitterly opposed any agitation of the abolition question. 

Earnest appeals from the south came to the north to suppress the 
abolitionists. But those in authority could do no more than to stand 
by the first amendment to the Constitution which says, "Congress 
shall make no law abridging the freedom of speech or of the press." 
Public assemblies and free speech are thus guaranteed and no legis- 
lation can in any way abridge them. From these anti-slavery societies 
and other organizations there poured into congress hundreds of peti- 
tions praying for some legislation looking to the relief of the slave. 
All means which the friends of slavery in the north had tried in the 
early days of the conflict to check the growing anti-slavery sentiment, 
had failed. They thought there was at least one means which would 
annihilate the abolitionists. This last resort was violence. "Violence 
was the essential element in slavery violence was the law of its be- 
ing. " This violence was directed against individuals, assemblies and 
the press. 

There was a lack of unity, as to the means existing among the 
anti-slavery people of the north, and men upon whose souls lay the 
great burden which the nation itself ought to have cheerfully lifted, 
were in no sense fully agreed upon the final end and aim of their 
struggle. "It was fashionable to stigmatize them as ultra pragmatic, 
and angular, and to hold up their differences and divisions as a foil 
and shield against the arguments and appeals. Thousands consoled 
and defended themselves in their inaction because anti-slavery men 
were not agreed among themselves." But while there was a lack of 
unity in method, there was at least a line of cleavage which separated 
the anti-slavery people into two great classes. In one class were those 
who believed that the end whatever it might be was to be reached 
through constitutional legislation. These men might be called con- 
servatives. They were fully persuaded that their friends in the other 
class were not safe in their counsel. These men were found in the 
two parties then recognized or soon to be recognized the Whig and 
the Democratic. They hoped to reach the end they cherished by 
faithful effort within their respective political party organizations. 
This class of public men who held to the idea of political action as 
the cure for the ills of slavery eventually made up the "Liberty 


In the other classes were those men who were not willing to wait 
for the long deferred day when the curse of slavery should be de- 


stroyed by the slow process of legislation. For they knew that any 
legislation not the outgrowth of public sentiment would be a dead 
letter upon the statute books. Legislation must follow public senti- 
ment, not create it. And to the men of the Garrison cast there was 
no sign of the growth of a sentiment in the south, by 1835 or there- 
abouts, that had any ray of hope as to the final extinction of slavery. 
The fact was that by 1835 the public men of the south who had for- 
merly favored some form of abolition were now bitterly opposed to 
any effort along that line. This restless class was known as the ' ' Gar- 
rison Abolitionists." They were the radicals. Their fundamental 
doctrines were "no union with slave holders," and "the United States 
Constitution is a covenant with death and an agreement with hell!" 
There never was any doubt as to the sincerity of purpose of these 
"Garrison Abolitionists." Nor must we imagine that they were 
fanatics. They were men of great power and consecration. They 
belonged to that class to whom the world pays homage. They are the 
men for whom we erect monuments. They are the men and women 
whose birthplaces we search out and whose homes, though humble, 
we mark with tablets of bronze and marble. They are they whose 
lives are a benediction and whose death is a national calamity. True 
these men were iconoclasts, they were revolutionists, they would not 
be limited by any law constitutional or legislative which was antago- 
nistic to the law of conscience. They openly preached disunion. They 
did not hesitate to state their "unalterable purpose and determina- 
tion to live and labor for the dissolution of the present union by all 
lawful and just, though bloodless and pacific means, and for the for- 
mation of a new republic, that shall be such not in name only, but in 
full living reality and truth." 

Believing in free speech and in a free press, they made use of both 
to spread their ideas and win many to their cause. True, in those days 
the newspaper was an infant compared with the great newspapers of 
today. Not only were the papers small in size, but their influence was 
very much limited by the very small numbers reached by their circula- 
tion. All the papers which plead the cause of the ' ' Garrison Abolition- 
ists" were poorly supported financially. 

Among these newspapers the reading public is quite familiar with 
Lundy's Genius of Universal Emancipation, Garrison's Liberator, The 
Philanthropist, the Emancipator, and the Alton Observer. 

The spirit of violence above referred to which Mr. Henry Wilson in 
his "Rise and Fall of the Slave Power in America," calls the funda- 
mental idea in slavery, began now to spend its fury on these news- 
papers, presses, and their editors. We are now in a position to under- 
stand the life-work and the martyrdom of the editor of the Alton Ob- 


Elijah Parish Lovejoy was born in Albion, Kennebec county, Maine, 
November 8, 1802. He was the oldest of a family of nine, seven sons 
and two daughters. His father, the Rev. Daniel Lovejoy, was a Congre- 
gational minister, and his mother was a Miss Elizabeth Pattee, a lady 
of excellent standing in that section. 

There is nothing to record of this young New England scion that 


may not be said of another Yankee boy, unless it may be that he was un- 
usually precocious. He could read the Bible fluently at the age of four 
years. He spent his early years on the farm, and all the time that could 
be spared from the work was diligently applied upon his books. The fact 
that his father was a scholarly gentleman and his mother a lady of cult- 
ure explains why young Lovejoy made very rapid progress in his edu- 

His preparatory courses were taken in two academies near his home, 
and later he entered Waterville College. From this institution he grad- 
uated with the honors of his class in 1826. He was somewhat given to 
athletic sports and was greatly admired by his fellow students, for his 
manly bearing and his gentlemanly deportment. While in college he 
produced quite a little poetry and one production was of considerable 
merit, the ' ' Inspiration of the Muse. ' ' In later years while in St. Louis 
he penned a short poem which was published in the St. Louis Times of 
which he was assistant editor. This seems to prophesy his sad taking 
off. One stanza read as follows : 

My Mother, I am far away 

Prom home and love and thee, 
And stranger hands may heap the clay 

That soon may cover me. 

After graduation from college he taught school in his native state 
and then catching the fever of immigration, he left his home, his people, 
and his native haunts and turned his course westward whence were 
coming such thrilling stories of adventures, opportunity, and sacrifice. 
Whether or not he purposed coming to the growing city of St. Louis 
when he started is not stated, suffice it to say he reached that place in 
the fall of 1827. He engaged in the business of teaching, and during 
his leisure hours he studied, wrote letters back to his home, and fur- 
nished articles for the Missouri Republican. Some time in 1828 he be- 
came connected with the St. Louis Times as contributor or possibly as 
staff correspondent. This was a Whig paper and supported Henry 
Clay for the presidency, and Mr. Lovejoy was regarded as one who had 
vigorously championed the cause of the great Whig leader. 

In the great revival in St. Louis in the winter of 1831-2, Mr. Love- 
joy united with the Presbyterian church of that city, the pastor at that 
time being the Rev. Dr. W. S. Potts. Being naturally seriously minded, 
he felt he ought to give his life to the ministry, and he was therefore 
more easily prevailed upon by his pastor to enter the theological semi- 
nary at Princeton, New Jersey, in the spring of 1832. Here he re- 
mained one year, after which he was licensed to preach by the Second 
Presbyterian church of Philadelphia. He spent the summer of 1832 in 
New York and other eastern cities and in the fall of that year he re- 
turned to St. Louis. 


Lovejoy was now prevailed upon to begin the publication of a 
weekly religious newspaper. Friends furnished the necessary means, 
and the first number of the St. Louis' Observer was issued November 22, 
1832. The editorial and business management of the paper occupied 
his time quite fully, yet he found time to preach often in adjoining lo- 


calities. As early as 1834 he began to discuss editorially the subject 
of slavery. From these editorials we gather that he was not an aboli- 
tionist. In one issue of his paper he says: "Gradual emancipation is 
the remedy we propose. ... In the meantime the rights of all 
classes of our citizens should be respected." In a later issue he pro- 
poses this question: "How and by whom is emancipation to be ef- 
fected ? by the masters themselves and no others can effect it ; nor is it 
desirable that they should even if they could. Emancipation, to be of 
any value to the slaves, must be the free, voluntary act of the master, 
performed from a conviction of its propriety." From these extracts it 
would not appear that Lovejoy was a writer whose pen poisoned the ink 
into which he dipped it. On the other hand it seems to us at this time 
that such expressions were very mild, to say the least. 

But these expressions were distasteful to many of his readers, and 
to many more they evidently appeared ill-timed ; for on October 5, 1835, 
nine prominent men, among whom was his former pastor, the Rev. Dr. 
Potts, presented Lovejoy a written statement in which they begged 
him to cease the slavery agitation. They warned him that many threats 
of violence were heard and they greatly feared for his personal safety 
and for that of his property. Lovejoy appears not to have returned a 
written reply to this letter, but he seems to have taken pains to pre- 
serve it, for on October 24, 1837, more than two years later and just 
shortly before his death, he endorsed this letter as follows: "I did not 
yield to the wishes here expressed, and in consequence have been per- 
secuted ever since. But I have kept a good conscience, and that repays 
me for all I have suffered, or can suffer. I have sworn eternal opposi- 
tion to slavery, and by the blessings of God, I will never go back." 


While it is probable that Lovejoy did not formally reply to his nine 
friends, in an issue of the Observer shortly following the receipt of the 
admonition, he presented his views on the question of slavery, and 
claimed protection in the utterance of his position on the subject, since 
the constitution of Missouri says: "That the free communication of 
thoughts and opinions is one of the invaluable rights of man, and that 
every person may freely speak, write, and print on any subject being 
responsible for the abuse of that liberty." He closed this appeal to 
the people with the following declaration : 

I do, therefore, as an American citizen and Christian patriot, and 
in the name of liberty, law and religion, solemnly protest against all 
these attempts, howsoever and by whomsoever made, to frown down 
the liberty of the press and forbid the free expression of opinion. Un- 
der a deep sense of obligation to my country, the church, and my God, 
I declare it to be my fixed purpose to submit to no such dictation. And 
I am prepared to abide by consequences. I have appealed to the con- 
stitution and laws of my country. If they fail to protect me, I appeal 
to God and with Him I cheerfully rest my cause. 


The public mind became more and more disturbed and the proprie- 
tors of the Observer asked Lovejoy to resign as editor and business 


manager. This he cheerfully did. The plant had not been a paying in- 
vestment and it was turned over to a Mr. Moore who seemed to be finan- 
cially responsible for a debt soon to fall due. Mr. Moore, who was now 
owner, asked Mr. Lovejoy to assume again control of the paper with the 
understanding that it should be moved to Alton. 

Mr. Lovejoy found the Alton people quite pleased at the idea of the 
removal of the paper to their town. In the meantime Mr. Moore and his 
friends changed their minds and decided to continue the publication of 
the paper in St. Louis. Accordingly everything ran smoothly till an 
unfortunate occurrence in that city in April, 1836. This was the burning 
alive of a negro by a mob. The negro had, without any provocation, 
fatally stabbed the deputy sheriff who had the negro under arrest. The 
Observer, of course, took note of the double crime, dwelling upon the 
danger of the spirit of mob violence. No stress whatever was attached 
to the fact that the person mobbed was a black man. In connection 
with the denunciation of this mob in St. Louis condemnatory articles 
appeared relative to mob violence of recent occurrence in Mississippi 
and Massachusetts. The court, Judge Lawless, in charging the grand 
jury in relation to this burning of the negro virtually said if you find 
that the act was that of a multitude then you will not be able to find any 
true bills in the case. This charge by the judge to the grand jury was 
also attacked by the Observer. Popular excitement now ran high, which 
was not allayed by the announcement that the press would be removed 
to Alton. The office was entered by unknown parties, and the fixtures 
broken up and some type destroyed ; but the press was not seriously 
damaged, and preparations were made to ship it to Alton. The press 
reached Alton on Sunday morning, July 24, 1836. 


The press lay upon the wharf through the day of its arrival, but that 
night a mob broke it to pieces and threw the fragments into the river. 
The citizens of Alton called a public meeting and while they passed 
resolutions condemnatory of abolitionism, they also were equally out- 
spoken in their condemnation of the action of the mob in the destruc- 
tion of the press. Lovejoy was at this meeting and is said to have 
promised that he would desist from discussing the subject of slavery. 

But in later years his friends denied this and put out a very strong 
statement to that effect. The public statement signed by ten men who 
were present, and heard Lovejoy speak, says that they were willing to 
testify that he did say: "But, gentlemen, as long as I am an American 
citizen, and as long as American blood runs in these veins, I shall hold 
myself at liberty to speak, to write, and to publish whatever I please on 
the subject being amenable to the laws of my country for the same." 
The ten men who put out this public statement were : 
George H. Walworth Solomon E. Moore 

John W. Chickering F. W. Graves 

A. Alexander A. B. Roff 

Effingham Cock James Morse, Jr. 

W. L. Chappell Charles W. Hunter 

As the result of the mass meeting held to condemn the destruction of 
the press, money was raised and a new press was purchased and on the 


8th of September, 1836, the first issue of the Alton Observer was given 
to the people. From that day to the following August the paper was 
issued regularly. During this time it would appear that Mr. Lovejoy 
had undergone a change relative to the manner of dealing with the 
slavery question. He had by the middle of the summer of 1837 taken 
a position of immediate emancipation. He was now willing to petition 
congress to abolish slavery in the District of Columbia. He was also 
converted to the idea that the time was at hand for the organization, in 
the state and the country, of anti-slavery societies. 

He advocated the organization of 'an "Illinois State Anti-Slavery 
Society." It was finally agreed among those interested that Alton 
would be the proper place, and about November 1, 1837, the time for 
such a meeting the meeting was finally called for October 26, 1837. 

In all these weeks and months as time went by, there was a very 
steady growth of opposition to the work and influence of Mr. Lovejoy. 
Many absurdly false stories were circulated to lower the estimation of 
good people concerning Mr. Lovejoy. On July 8, a mass meeting was 
held in the market house in Alton at which meeting resolutions were 
passed censuring the editor of the Observer for continually dinning 
this slavery question in their ears. A committee of five men was ap- 
pointed to notify Mr. Lovejoy of the feeling of the public and of the 
action of the market house mass meeting. Mr. Lovejoy replied in a very 
dignified way, stating that he denied the right of a public meeting to 
dictate what sentiments should be expressed in a public newspaper. 

The pro-slavery sentiment could not contain itself much longer. It 
must have vent in some personal violence. On the evening of August 
21, 1837, late at night, two young doctors, Beall and Jenning, called 
upon Col. George T. M. Davis, a lawyer of prominence, and informed 
him that they had started out in company with a dozen others with the 
express purpose of tarring and feathering the abolition editor, and that 
they had met him coming to town from his home. The mob stopped 
Mr. Lovejoy and told him their errand, whereupon Mr. Lovejoy told 
them that he was going into town after some medicine for his wife who 
was very sick, that he knew that they had power to do with him as they 
pleased, but that if one of this mob would take the prescription into 
town and get the medicine and return with it to his sick wife and not 
let her know what had become of him, then he would go with them and 
cheerfully abide by their wishes. At this no one dared to accept the 
challenge, whereupon, they sneakingly retired and allowed him to pro- 
ceed. But if they were not brave enough to lay hands on an honest, 
innocent man they were brave enough to do a deed twice as dastardly. 
They repaired to his office, broke it open, and destroyed his press and 
material. It was now confidently believed that abolitionism had been 
given a death blow in Alton. 

But they who reasoned thus had not reckoned with the abolition 
forces, for immediately the friends and supporters of Lovejoy met and 
voted to call for a popular subscription for the purpose of buying an- 
other press. The funds flowed in with amazing promptitude and by 
September 21, a new press had arrived from Cincinnati. It was stored 
in a warehouse on Second street between State and Piasa streets. That 
night a mob broke open the warehouse and carried the press to the 
river's edge and there it was broken to pieces and the pieces thrown 
into the river. This was the third press destroyed and the fourth case 


of violence to Mr. Love joy's presses. The question now arose in the 
minds of some of Mr. Lovejoy's friends whether to remain in Alton and 
fight the issue to a finish or remove to Quincy where the people had 
promised ample protection and support. Mr. Lovejoy never for a 
moment doubted what his duty was. He thought the paper ought to 
remain in Alton. 

In the meantime a gathering of what promised to be an anti-slavery 
convention assembled in upper Alton on October 26, to which had been 
invited all who thought slavery a sin, together with those who were 
"friends of free discussion." The pro-slavery men were in a majority, 
having come under the head of "friends of free discussion." After a 
two days' discussion the meeting adjourned without accomplishing 
anything, but fifty-five anti-slavery men met and quietly organized a 
' ' State Anti-Slavery Society. ' ' These fifty-five men were of the opinion 
that the Observer should be continued in Alton. It was finally made 
known that a fourth press had been ordered and then the rage of the 
pro-slavery people knew no bounds. A public meeting was called for 
Thursday, November 2, which after a brief session adjourned to the 
next day. At this second session strong condemnatory resolutions 
were passed. Lovejoy was present in this meeting and made a most 
touching appeal to those present for protection. 

Mr. Lovejoy said in that meeting: 

Mr. Chairman, it is not true as has been charged upon me that I 
hold in contempt the feelings and sentiments of this community in ref- 
erence to the question which is now agitating it. ... But, sir, 
while I value the good opinion of my fellow-citizens as highly as any- 
one, I may be permitted to say that I am governed by higher considera- 
tions than either the favor or the fear of man. ... I plant myself 
down upon my unquestionable right, and the question to be decided is 
whether I shall be protected in the enjoyments of these rights that is 
the question, sir, whether my property shall be protected, whether I 
shall be suffered to go home to my family at night without being as- 
sailed, threatened with tar and feathers and assassination whether my 
afflicted wife, whose life has been in jeopardy from continual alarm and 
excitement, shall night after night be driven from a sick bed into the 
garret to save herself from brick bats and violence of the mob. That, 
sir, is the question! ... I know, sir, that you can tar and feather 
me, hang me, or put me in the Mississippi without the least difficulty. 
But what then? Where shall I go? . . . I have concluded, after 
consulting with my friends, and earnestly seeking counsel of God, to 
remain in Alton, and here insist on protection in the exercise of my 
rights. If the civil authorities refuse to protect me, I must look to God, 
and if I die, I am determined to make my grave in Alton. 

The Reverend Mr. Dimmock has said : " I know of no more pathetic 
figure in all history than this man standing up alone among a host of 
enemies with tears streaming from his eyes pleading for that liberty 
of speech and of press which is the foundation of all liberties ; with the 
shadow of death already gathering about him, yet ready and willing 
to die rather than yield the highest and noblest right of citizenship." 
Lovejoy's words were very powerful as those who heard them after- 
wards testified. 



The fourth press was on its way to the city of Alton. The mayor of 
the city, Mr. John M. Krum, having a very limited police force, was 
willing that a body of private citizens should act as a sort of militia to 
preserve order and protect property. About 2 o'clock on Tuesday 
morning, November 7, the press was landed at the wharf and was im- 
mediately moved to the ware-rooms of Godfrey, Oilman & Co., where 
it was placed on the fourth floor. Although this was 2 o'clock or later 
in the morning yet the mayor was present to assist, so far as he might, 
in protecting the press. So also was Mr. Oilman, a member of the 
above named firm. Likewise the citizen-soldier-band, about sixty in 
number, was present. There were no demonstrations that night and 
early in the morning of the 7th, the militia went to their homes. 
Nothing occurred through the day which would indicate that harm was 
intended to person or property. Toward evening the militia band to 
the number of sixty or thereabouts came to this store of Godfrey and 
Oilman to drill. They were accustomed to drill in an upper room of 
the big double building, one end of which faced Second street, and the 
other overlooking the river, faced Levee street, or First street. In this 
upper room the militia drilled till about 9 o'clock, and thinking every- 
thing would be safe, they were about ready to go to their homes when 
Mr. Oilman asked if they did not think it would be safer for a detail to 
remain all night. He told them they could sleep on the goods in the 
store. Mr. Oilman's advice was taken and twenty men remained, in- 
cluding Mr. Oilman and Mr. Lovejoy. 

Those who went to their homes had been gone but a short time till 
there were signs of trouble. The mob spirit began to show itself. Pres- 
ently Edward Keating, a lawyer, and Henry W. West, a merchant, ap- 
peared at the store and asked to see Mr. Oilman. They said the gentlemen 
who were gathering outside had sent them to demand the surrender of 
the press, and further said if the press were given up that no harm 
would be done to persons or property. Mr. Oilman referred the matter 
to the little band ' and after consultation they decided not to comply 
with their demands. Keating and "West then said that the people with- 
out would certainly destroy the building if that were necessary to secure 
the press. Some of the guard wanted to keep Keating and West as 
hostages till morning, and if this course had been adopted probably the 
sacrifice of two lives would not have been necessary. But they were 
allowed to depart, and their report to the mob only added fuel to the 
flame and they began an attack on the building with rocks and clubs. 
The men inside had elected a captain, but he was not equal to the 
emergency and they soon took positions to suit their own notion of 

It was a very bright moonlight night and one of the guards in the 
building, Henry Tanner, who afterwards wrote fully of all the incidents, 
said he could easily distinguish his neighbors on the ground below as he 
looked out of the doors and windows of the upper floors. The mob be- 
came more and more demonstrative and shots were fired. Presently one 
of the militiamen fired into the mob and shot a man named Bishop, who 
died before they could get him to Dr. Hart's office across the street. 
Then the mob made preparations to set fire to the building by climbing 
to the roof on the east side, but they were driven back. Other attempts 



were made when Lovejoy, Roff, and Weller went outside next to the 
levee to defend it against 1 fire when Lovejoy was shot from behind a 
pile of lumber at a short distance eastward. He received five balls in 
his body. He walked inside and up a pair of stairs and said, "I am 
shot ! I am shot ! I am dead ! He fell to the floor without another word 
and expired. Roff and Weller were both seriously wounded. Keating 
and West came then to the door and said they desired to agree upon 
terms of surrender. The terms offered were to surrender the press and 
cease the defense. This was finally agreed to and fifteen of the twenty 
marched out, but they were fired at by the mob until they were out of 
sight, but fortunately no one was hurt. The five men who remained were 
Lovejoy dead, Weller and Roff wounded, Thompson, who remained be- 
hind till the mob entered the building, and Hurlburt, who stayed by 
the dead body of his chief. 

The press was broken to pieces when the mob dispersed. The dead 
body of Lovejoy lay on a cot till the following day, the 8th of Novem- 
ber, the thirty-fifth anniversary of his birth. A hearse was procured 
and the body taken to the late residence. Mr. Owen Lovejoy was with 
the stricken wife, and as the dead body of his brother lay before him 
"he vowed that from henceforth he would fight the cursed institution 
which had killed his brother." The body was prepared for burial and 
a grave was dug on a bluff which in after years came to be the City 




Cemetery. The Rev. Thomas Lippincott conducted simple services. No 
sermon or remarks or any explanation of the death was offered. No 
inquest was held over the body and a very few attended the funeral. 

Eleven years after this tragic event the Rev. Thomas Dimmock, then 
a young man living in Alton, in company with an older citizen, found 
the grave of Lovejoy marked with the initials E. P. L. carved in the 
wood. The grave was between two large oaks. When the ground was 
fenced and laid off as a cemetery a street ran directly over the grave, 
the trees were cut down and the board disappeared. The superintendent 
of the cemetery, Mr. William Bruden, knew the .grave and so he placed 
two limestone rocks, one at the head and one at the foot, letting them 
down level with the top of the ground. And thus the grave remained in 
the middle of the street for several years. Eventually Maj. Charles W. 
Hunter had the remains removed to an adjoining lot of his own. The 
person to do this work was a colored man by the name of William John- 
ston. This colored man had dug the grave and buried Love joy's re- 


mains at the time of his death and now we have a very definite chain of 
evidence as to the identity of the grave. 

When the remains were removed by order of Major Hunter a crude 
sort of tombstone, probably an old one, was placed at the grave and 
marked ' ' Lovejoy. ' ' In later years the Rev. Mr. Dimmock purchased a 
simple marble scroll resting on a block of granite. On the scroll he had 
inscribed : 

Hie Jacet Lovejoy. Jam Parce Sepulto. "Here Lies Lovejoy. 
Spare him now that he is buried." 

The lot was transferred from Major Hunter to the Rev. Mr. Dim- 
mock, and in August, 1885, he transferred all right, title, and interest 
in the lot to the colored people of Alton. The city of Alton set aside a 
suitable lot upon which to erect a monument and an association was 
formed and considerable interest manifested in the erection of a suit- 
able monument. But nothing of any importance was accomplished till 
June 17, 1895. In that year the general assembly appropriated the sum 
of $25,000 for the purpose of erecting a suitable monument to the 
memory of this martyr to the cause of free speech, free press, and free 
men. The citizens of Alton supplemented this with a smaller amount 
and thus there stands in the cemetery at Alton a beautiful shaft to per- 
petuate the memory of one of America 's martyrs. 








It will be recalled that the unfortunate internal improvement venture 
had its beginning in the administration of Governor Duncan. In the 
first two years of Governor Duncan 's term, the public mind was largely 
occupied with the banking business and with the Illinois and Michigan 
canal. From the meeting of the legislature in December, 1836, to the 
end of Governor Carlin's term, the absorbing topic was internal im- 
provement. In the midst, therefore, of this wild excitement concerning 
railroad and canal building, the building of cities and towns, and the 
issuing of bonds by the millions, a campaign was waged for the gover- 
norship of the state. 


The election for governor and other offices was held in August, 1838. 
There were two leading candidates for governor. Cyrus W. Edwards, a 
Whig, announced his candidacy and allied himself with the improvement 
system. His opponent was Thomas Carlin, of Carrollton, Greene county. 
Mr. Carlin was a ' ' Democrat of the straightest sect. ' ' Notwithstanding 
the important local interest of the state, the campaign managers appar- 
ently recognized the national interest as paramount. The Whig ticket 
in Morgan county was headed " Anti-Sub-treasury Ticket. For a sound 
specie-paying National Bank, and for curtailing the Internal Improve- 
ment System." To meet this array of political principles the opposing 
ticket read "For the Sub-treasury. Against a National Bank, and for 
a vigorous prosecution and final completion of the Internal Improvement 

The canvass was a strenuous one and was participated in by the 
leading Whigs and Democrats. The Democrats were victorious by a 
majority of less than one thousand votes. The legislature met in Decem- 
ber and Governor Carlin was inducted into office. He unfortunately 
encouraged the improvement people and, as has been said, nearly a 
million dollars additional appropriations were added to the improvement 
schemes. In addition some measures of general interest were passed; 
one to establish the library for the supreme court: one to establish the 



Illinois Asylum for the education of the deaf and dumb ; one requiring 
the governor to reside at the seat of government of the state. 

We have already spoken of the removal of the capital from Van- 
dalia to Springfield. The constitution of 1818 provided that the capital 
should remain in Kaskaskia until removed by action of the general 
assembly. It also provided that when so removed it must remain where 
located for twenty years. The legislature of 1836-7, by a vote of the 
senate and house, located the capital at Springfield. In the session of 
the legislature of 1838-9, steps were taken for the transfer of the records 
and other belongings of the state. A state house was under construction, 
but not complete, and at the convening of the legislature in special ses- 
sion on December 9, 1839, the use of the Second Presbyterian church 
was secured for the sittings of the house ; the Methodist church, for the 
senate; and the Episcopal church for the supreme court. 

The capitol which was undergoing construction was to be a very 
elegant and commodious building. It was located in the center of the 
square, and was 123 feet long, 89 feet wide, and 44 feet high. It was 
constructed from native stone quarried only a few miles from the town. 
At the north and south ends very large round pillars supported a pro- 
jecting portico, and the whole was surmounted by a dome of proper 
proportion. It is still standing and has been extensively repaired, and 
enlarged by putting an extra story between the basement and what was 
formerly the first story. It is now the courthouse for Sangamon county. 

The special session of the legislature which met in Springfield Decem- 
ber 9, 1839, was chiefly concerned about the winding up of the affairs 
of the collapsed improvement scheme. The session was adjourned Feb- 
ruary 3, 1840. 


The great "Tippecanoe and Tyler Too" campaign of 1840 was 
warmly contested in Illinois. It was in this campaign that the won- 
derful powers of Lincoln and Douglas as public orators became known 
through the state and the nation. Illinois was divided into three con- 
gressional districts, the third being made of the thirty-four northern 
counties. Stephen A. Douglas and Mr. John T. Stuart, Lincoln's law 
partner, were candidates for congress in this district in 1838, and 
Stuart was elected by fourteen votes. In the canvass of 1840 this dis- 
trict was therefore fighting ground. The Whigs planned a large meet- 
ing in Springfield in June, 1840. Lincoln was one of the five presiden- 
tial electors and he was very anxious not to be defeated. *To this 
meeting came twenty thousand, some said fifty thousand people. They 
came from as far north as Chicago. It took fourteen teams to bring 
the Chicago delegation and they were three weeks on the journey. They 
brought a two-masted ship with a band of music and a six pound can- 
non. Delegations came from all directions. A log cabin was drawn 
in the procession by thirty yoke of oxen, and in a hickory tree planted 
by the side of this cabin live coons were playing ; a barrel of hard cider 
stood near the door. Lincoln made a great speech, possibly several 
during the day, from a wagon. Thousands of people crowded around 
him. He was then only thirty-one years old, but was rapidly coming 
into public favor. 

The Democrats held enthusiastic gatherings throughout the state at 


which eloquent speakers praised the virtues of "little Van." The 
Democrats carried Illinois by a majority of 1,939. This is accounted 
for by noting the vote along the canal and in Cook and St. Clair 
counties. Here the foreign vote was large, and they are supposed to 
have voted with the Democrats. The questions over which these two 
parties fought their campaign were : Internal improvements by the 
general government, United States Bank, Protective Tariff, National 

There was also elected in the fall of 1840 a legislature. And in- 
stead of selecting men who were especially fitted to solve the problems 
arising in the state, men were selected largely by reason of their affilia- 
tion with national parties. There was a lack of sympathy between 
these strong partisans when they came together in the state legislature, 
and often the interests of the state suffered by reason thereof. 

There was some talk in the years of 1839-40-41, of repudiating the 
state's great debt. This is usually considered a very unpatriotic pro- 
ceeding. A state may, however, repudiate its debt and there were 
those who were favorable to such action. Of course few public men 
talked of repudiation openly, but privately many were favorable to it. 
Governor Ford, in his history, says: "It is my solemn belief that 
when I came into office, I had the power to make Illinois a repudiating 
state." Governor Ford means that all the people needed was a bold 
leader. But no legislative action was ever taken which looked toward 
repudiation. The state's indebtedness was eventually paid and the 
honor of the state saved. 


By 1840 it was seen that the state could not carry out its improve- 
ment plans and steps were taken to abandon the work. 

And while there was an effort to continue certain phases of the work 
the general feeling was that the safest and sanest thing to do was to re- 
verse completely the policy. Laws were passed abolishing the board of 
fund commissioners and the board of public works. One fund com- 
missioner was then authorized to act but without power to sell bonds or 
to borrow money on the credit of the state. A board of public works, 
consisting of three members was created. This fund commissioner and 
this board of public works were to wind up all business without delay, 
pay off all contractors in orders on the treasury, and discharge all em- 
ployees except such as were absolutely necessary to wind up the busi- 
ness. All bonds unsold were to be returned and burned. The new 
board of public works was to take charge and operate any roads which 
were near completion. 

The work on the Illinois and Michigan canal was not checked. 

The "Great Northern Cross Railroad," which was being constructed 
from Springfield to Quincy was completed from Meredosia to Jackson- 
ville, a distance of about twenty-five miles. The total cost of the road 
between these points was $1,000.000. An engine was put on in 1842. 
The income was not as large as the expenses and in the course of a year 
or so the engine was taken off and the road wns leased and run bv mule 
power for several years. It was eventually sold for $100,000. which, was 
paid for in state stock which was worth twenty-one cents on the dollar. 

In 1840 our indebtedness was more than $14,000,000. This large 
debt should, however, be credited by the following items: 


Forty-two thousand acres of land bought by the state, unsold. 

Two hundred thirty thousand four hundred sixty seven acres of 
canal donation unsold. 

Three thousand four hundred ninety-one town lots in Chicago, Ot- 
tawa, etc. 

Two hundred ten thousand acres of land donated by congress in 

A large consignment of railroad iron. 

Large pieces of unfinished railroad in the state. 

Illinois and Michigan canal. 

Thus stood the debit and credit sides of the state's account in 1840 
when the internal improvement schemes collapsed. 


Conventions for the nomination of candidates were a part of the 
party machinery by 1842. It appears also that people in those days 
believed in long drawn out campaigns, for as early as December, 1841, 
the Democratic state convention was held in Springfield for the nomi- 
nation of candidates for state offices. The honors fell upon Adam W. 
Snyder, of St. Clair county, for governor, and upon John Moore, of Mc- 
Lean county, for lieutenant governor. In the spring of 1842 ex-Gover- 
nor Duncan became the Whig candidate for governor, and W. H. Hen- 
derson, for lieutenant governor. The campaign promised to be a very 
interesting one because of the Mormon problem which was just then 
attracting attention. The Mormons had made liberal requests upon the 
legislature and it appears that Mr. Snyder, who was a member of that 
body, had been quite active in assisting them to secure what they de- 
sired. This fact was used against him and would probably have seri- 
ously hindered him in his canvass. But in the early summer Mr. Sny- 
der died and it was necessary for the party to put forward another 
standard bearer. 

A Democratic caucus was called at Springfield in June, and Thomas 
Ford, a judge on the supreme bench, was selected as the candidate. 
Judge -Ford was an ideal candidate for office he was not an office 
seeker. He had come to Illinois as early as 1808. He was a poor boy 
whose father had been massacred by the Indians in Pennsylvania. He 
had been fortunate to have for his friend Daniel P. Cook, who assisted 
young Ford in many ways. Judge Ford had held the office of state's 
attorney, and also various judgeships. He in no way could be charged 
with interest in, or sympathy for the Mormons. The times were indeed 
in need of a wise counselor and a courageous leader and no one was bet- 
ter fitted to save the state from the impending dishonor of repudiation. 

The canvass was spirited, the chief topic being the Mormons, the 
canal, the banks, and the claims of Wisconsin to the fourteen counties 
in the northern part of the state. Duncan had the advantage of pre- 
vious campaigning and was, besides, a strong candidate. Judge Ford 
no doubt thought it wise not to express too freely his views upon the 
troublesome questions for they were all troublesome and so was ac- 
cused by Duncan of keeping from the people his real position on the 
questions of the day. When the ballots were counted Ford had beaten 
Duncan by over eight thousand votes. The legislature was very largely 
Democratic. Many prominent in the later history of the state and the 


nation were present as members of the legislature when it met in De- 
cember, 1842. Two future governors, Matteson and Yates, were mem- 

Governor Ford's inaugural message was full of vigorous suggestions 
for the legislature. He was in favor of paying every dollar of the 
state's indebtedness, he favored finishing the canal, and declared the 
banks should resume specie payment or suffer their business to be wound 
up by the state. He found the annual expense of carrying on the state 
government was $170,000 per year, while the receipts were only $140,- 
000, leaving a deficit of $30,000 each year. In this way a floating debt 
had grown to $313,000. Auditor's warrants on the treasury were sell- 
ing for 50 cents on the dollar, while the internal improvement bonds 
were worth but 14 cents on the dollar. No one seemed to know just 
what to do; all were appalled by a bonded indebtedness of something 
near $15,000,000. Many were in favor of public repudiation though 
not generally openly announcing their views. The fact is that very few 
of the members of the legislature had had enough experience in han- 
dling large financial ventures to have any conception of the problem be- 
fore them. 


While the internal improvement schemes were absorbing the inter- 
ests of the people, the Illinois and Michigan canal, which was in a meas- 
ure an independent matter, was making very good progress. A large 
amount of money had been spent upon this project and there was yet 
quite a sum needed to finish it. Many plans had been suggested for its 
completion, but none were accepted until Mr. Justin Butterfield, of 
Chicago, a lawyer of eminent ability, and withal a patriotic man, 
brought forward a scheme for its completion. 

This was a proposition to the holders of the canal bonds to advance 
$160,000, the amount thought necessary to finish the canal, and to take 
a lien on the canal and all its property together with its income. This 
loan and all bonds held by those who would advance this money were 
to become a sort of preferred claim against the canal and its interests. 
This, after considerable investigation and consideration was agreed to 
and the completion of the canal assured. 

The next thing in which the governor was interested was the State 
Bank, for he knew that rash measures toward the banks would be looked 
upon with suspicion by those upon whom we were depending to finish 
the canal. His idea was a compromise. He drew the bill himself and 
it was passed by the house by one hundred and seven to four. A similar 
bill also passed relative to the Shawneetown bank. This bill provided 
that the banks which held more than $3,000,000 worth of bonds, audi- 
tor's warrants, etc., against the state should turn them over to the 
state, while the state should surrender a like amount of bank stock, 
dollar for dollar. This arrangement with the two banks reduced the 
state's indebtedness over $3,000,000. The bills also provided that the 
banks should go into liquidation. 


Another law was passed which made the governor the fund com- 
missioner. He and the auditor were to have charge of all the property 


connected with the improvement scheme. They were to collect all this 
material and turn it into cash. A resolution was passed which pledged 
the state to the payment of every dollar of indebtedness which had been 
contracted in the internal improvement venture. All that was done by 
this legislature under the guidance of Governor Ford seems to have been 
safe and sane. At least it was so regarded at the time, for auditor's 
warrants rose from 50 cents on the dollar, at the beginnning of Ford's 
term, to 90 cents and above. State bonds were 14 cents on the dollar at 
the beginning of the administration, and before Ford went out of office 
they were 50 cents. 

It is also said that as much as $5,000,000 of the debt was wiped out 
by the increase in the value of the lands and appurtenances of the canal 
and railroad. Again, at the close of Governor Ford's term, the floating 
debt was $31,212 instead of $313,000 as at the beginning. In many 
ways there was a restoration of confidence. Immigration was renewed 
and the population reached three-quarters of a million. 


In the administration of Governor Ford there were two serious prob- 
lems, both of which were social in their nature, though one was some- 
what religious. These were the Mormon problem, and the Flathead and 
Regulator war in the counties bordering on the Ohio river. The Mor- 
mon problem was not in any way directly connected with Southern Illi- 
nois and for that reason only a passing notice can be taken of it. 

Joseph Smith was born in Vermont December 23, 1805. When a 
young man he claimed to have had a vision in which a book was seen 
which revealed a new religion. Smith organized a church April 6, 1830. 
Later his followers established themselves at Kirtland, Ohio, Indepen- 
dence, Missouri, and later at Nauvoo, Illinois. They began coming into 
Illinois in the fall of 1839. In two years there were as many as six- 
teen thousand people in Nauvoo. They soon took an active part in poli- 
tics and could by holding the balance of power exercise great influence 
in legislation. 

The city of Nauvoo received a charter from the legislature of such 
a nature that the state laws were superseded by the city charter. The 
city courts were of the same rank as state courts, and the city could or- 
ganize a military force. Friction between these people and the "Gen- 
tiles" of the surrounding country soon produced civil strife. The gov- 
ernor and the courts stood by helpless. Finally by a diplomatic move 
the state authorities secured the leader, Joseph Smith, and put him in 
the Hancock county jail where he was killed by a mob. The death of 
Smith was a great blow to the Mormon cause and soon thereafter they 
abandoned Nauvoo and moved west, eventually to Salt Lake. 

The other matter which engaged Governor Ford's attention was 
known in after years as the Flathead and Regulator war. Governor 
Ford in his history of Illinois devotes a chapter to an account of the 
troubles when it was fresh in his mind. Hon. James A. Rose has also 
given considerable attention to the event and has made quite a collec- 
tion of facts which has been filed in the State Historical library. 

The period from 1830 to 1850 was one of great disturbance and un- 
rest in Illinois. Within these two decades history records the Black 
Hawk war, the assassination of Lovejoy, internal improvement, the 


Mormon difficulties, the Flathead and Regulator war, the Mexican war, 
besides many minor disturbances. 

The war between the Flatheads and the Regulators was confined to 
the southeast part of the state, and chiefly to the counties of Hardin, 
Pope, and Massac, though other counties shared in the confusion and 
crimes resulting therefrom. This part of the state was settled chiefly 
by immigrants from Tennessee, the Carolinas, Virginia, and Kentucky. 
As early as 1800, and possibly much earlier, there was a ferry at the 
present little city of Golconda, and as the rough settlers from the above 
named states came to Illinois, they entered through the counties above 
mentioned. This region is located in the eastern end of the Ozarks and 
does not differ greatly from the Cumberland regions. It was rich in 
timber of all kinds which furnished mast for the hogs; cattle could live 
through the year on the grass and cane; the purest of water bubbled 
from scores of springs ; and take it altogether, it was an ideal place for 
rugged pioneers. The people were not all bad, but many unprincipled 
men eventually settled in that locality. 

As early as 1831, a man named Sturdevant located in the upper part 
of Pope county, built a fort, and began to manufacture counterfeit 
money. There was with him a number of people and for a while they 
appeared to be law-abiding citizens, but their business was soon re- 
vealed. Their spurious bills and coins were scattered broadcast. It is 
said that Sturdevant received $16 of good money for $100 of his 
counterfeit money. At first some of his confederates were arrested, but 
upon the trial of the case the jury would hang or in some way he would 
escape punishment. At last the community became so exasperated that 
a number of the best people entered into an organization for the purpose 
of driving these undesirable citizens out of the country. Among 
those who are named as belonging to this law and order committee 
were : Joseph Pryor, Dr. William Sim, Rev. William Rondeau, Hugh 
McNulty, Maj. John Raum, and others. It was the plan to raid the 
house in which Sturdevant had his tools, plates, etc. In some way the 
counterfeiter found out about the contemplated raid and was prepared 
with ' ' shot and shell. ' ' A battle ensued in which it is said that three of 
the counterfeiters were killed. The siege lasted till night when the 
outlaws made their escape. 

For a while the community was orderly, and there seemed to be no 
signs of outlawry. But soon the locality was disturbed by horse steal- 
ing and the presence of counterfeit money. The road leading west from 
Golconda was the one used by travelers and immigrants from Kentucky. 
There was a ferry at Golconda and travel naturally centered at the 

Whenever any of the better citizens would complain about these ir- 
regularities, they were sure to pay the penalty for their complaints in 
the loss of stock, the burning of their barns, or some form of personal 
harm. In fact there were instances of assassination as the penalty for 
freely expressing one's opinion as to who was guilty of horse stealing or 
passing counterfeit money. 

Another form of lawlessness practiced by the reckless element of 
the region of these river counties was kidnapping. The "Black Laws" 
were very severe on negroes who came into the state without freedom 
papers. Nor were negroes who were free, safe from kidnappers. These 
counties were the homes of a number of negroes and mulattoes who had 


been given their freedom. A ease is given in which three colored chil- 
dren were kidnapped by prominent citizens in Pope and Massac and 
sold in St. Louis, and eventually restored to their parents. The one re- 
sponsible for revealing the names of the kidnappers died shortly after 
from "apoplexy." A revolting story is told of the murderous attack 
upon an old man and his wife for being interested in some money sent 
into Pope county for some free negroes. The records of some of the 
Ohio river counties are yet burdened with some of the indictments and 
trials of those who were concerned in this shameful business. 

Public order was so disturbed and life and property so insecure that 
an organization was effected whose purpose was to safeguard life and 
property and restore the quiet and order in the community. This or- 
ganization was known as the Regulators. Some of the good men who 
supported the law-and-order. committee were : Dr. William Sim, Judge 
Wesley Sloan, Sheriff William Finley, James McCoy, Thomas Camp- 
bell, John Raum, father of General Rauni, and others. The persons who 
were accused of the violation of the laws were called Flatheads. The 
Regulators arrested several men accused of the attempted murder of 
Mr. and Mrs. Sides, spoken of above. In this case there were indict- 
ments and confinement in jail but never any regular trials in Pope 
county. Several of the accused were unmercifully whipped and others 
ordered to leave the county. Some were taken to Vienna on a change 
of venue and sentenced to the penitentiary. 

While this struggle between the Regulators and the Flatheads was 
going on, the legislature created Massac county. It is said this action 
was secured through the influence of the Flatheads with the thought 
that this element might control in that county and thus furnish a sort 
of place of refuge for outlaws. The two elements Regulators and 
FlatEeads were no longer so fully differentiated as they were at first. 
Not all bad people belonged to the Flatheads nor all good people to 
the Regulators. "The cruelties perpetrated by some of the so-called 
Regulators were such that good men began to revolt." Flatbeads were 
taken into the woods, strapped to a log and their backs beaten with 
hickory withes. Some were tied up to trees with weights fastened to 
their hands and left till they were all but dead. 

Judge Scates, who came to Metropolis to hold court in 1846, was 
virtually defied by the Regulators. So unbearable had become the 
conduct of the Regulators that the Flatheads joined with the civil au- 
thorities for the preservation of order. These disorders were at their 
height about the time of the trouble with the Mormons. Governor Ford 
was giving most of his attention to the problem of the Mormons, and 
apparently neglected the troubles along the Ohio. The governor did, 
however, appoint Dr. William I. Gibbs of Johnson county, to make 
an investigation into the matters in Massac county, which he did. He 
and others secured what they supposed was a sort of compromise, which 
worked out to the disadvantage of the Flatheads. 

Governor Augustus C. French succeeded Governor Ford in Decem- 
ber, 1846, and without delay gave attention to the affairs of the Ohio 
river counties. He commissioned Capt. W. S. Akin, A. D. Duff, and 
Samuel K. Casey, all of Franklin county, to go into Massac county 
and make full investigation and report. This they did. saying that 
there were good and bad men on both sides, and that the conditions 
were unbearable. The legislature created an extra court, which should 


try these eases out of the county in which the offence was committed, 
but this was held invalid and no relief came from that source. The 
war continued. A regular pitched battle between armed bodies was 
fought near Metropolis in 1849, in which about one hundred and fifty 
armed men engaged. These disturbances occupied the attention of the 
governor, the courts, and the legislature during the years of 1848 and 
1849. Finally, when it was seen that the state government was in 
earnest in its purpose to suppress the disorders, quiet was soon restored. 
It should be said of these people today that they are a law-abiding, 
industrious, kind-hearted people, who would make any sacrifices neces- 
sary in maintaining the good name of their counties. 

This war between the Flatheads and the Regulators became so 
noted that accounts of the disturbances were regularly published in 
the New Orleans Picayune, Louisville Journal, the New York Saturday 
Evening Post, the Courier of Philadelphia, and the St. Louis Republican. 

There are yet to be seen in these counties and adjacent counties 
remains of old forts usually constructed of rock, and enclosing consider- 
able areas of ground. The people living here do not seem to have any 
explanation of these forts, but it is conjectured that they may have 
been built by the two factions in the early days of this unfortunate 
strife. However, this is only conjecture. 



As early as February, 1846, the Democratic convention nominated 
Augustus C. French as the candidate of that party for governor. J. B. 
Wells was nominated for lieutenant governor. The Whigs were hope- 
lessly in the minority and could not persuade themselves to enter the 
race till late in the month of June, when a convention, assembled in 
Peoria, nominated Thomas M. Kilpatrick for governor and Gen. Nathan- 
iel G. Wilcox for the second place. The election was the first Tuesday 
in August and the new governor took his seat early in December. The 
canvass was in progress during the eventful days of the Mormon trouble 
and in the early days of the Mexican war. 


There was not much of an issue in the canvass. The Democrats 
were in favor of the Mexican war, while the Whigs were opposed to it. 
This made the Whigs unpopular. The Whigs charged French with be- 
ing entangled in the internal improvement schemes which to some peo- 
ple was a sure sign of corruption or of weakness. French was elected 
by a large majority. 

Governor French entered upon the duties of his office in December, 
1846. He inherited from the previous administrations some unfinished 
problems in statecraft. These were the Mormon problem, the internal 
improvement problem, the new constitution problem, and the Mexican 
war problem. Some of these had been in process of solution for several 
years, while others were comparatively new. 


The Mormon question was by no means wholly settled at the out- 
going of Governor Ford. From the death of Smith the 27th of June, 
1844, to December, 1846, when Governor Ford retired, there was more 
or less disorder and violence in the region of Hancock county. 

The Mormons in the fall and winter of 1845-6, were making pre- 
paration to remove from Nauvoo. The anti-Mormon sentiment was 
very strong in all the region of Nauvoo, and efforts were made to have 
their leaders arrested on the charge of counterfeiting. But Governor 
Ford refused on the ground that a sort of armistice had been entered 



into. Word was noised abroad that United States troops were coming 
in the spring of '46, and the exodus was begun and continued through 
that summer. Their property was purchased by Gentiles and by the 
time French came in as governor the Mormons had in the main left 
Nauvoo, but there was still a very unsettled state of the public mind 
and for many years the effects of the "Mormon wars" were felt in 
the northwestern part of the state. 

The internal improvement problem was in process of solution. The 
incomes of the state were not sufficient to pay the current expenses 
though the deficits were decreasing from year to year. Governor French 
recommended to the legislature that all the debts of the state, includ- 
ing bonds, scrip, and interest, be funded and that the new bonds be 
registered. In this way the people would know just exactly how much 
they owed and who held the bonds, and counterfeiting, which had 
come to be a very common thing, would be prevented. As a means of 
increasing taxes the state petitioned congress to abrogate the clause in 
the enabling act by which the state promised to exempt from taxation 
for five years after sale, all government land. Congress having com- 
plied with the request, the legislature provided for the taxation of all 
lands. This greatly aided in meeting the current expenses, especially 
as considerable land was bought in Illinois following the Mexican war. 

Texas was admitted into the Union in the summer of 1845. Mexico 
immediately broke off diplomatic relations with the United States. 
Gen. Zachary Taylor was ordered to Corpus Christi, near the terri- 
tory that was in dispute between Texas and Mexico. The winter of 
'45 and '46 was consumed in diplomatic maneuvering with barren re- 
sults. General Taylor moved to the Rio Grande in March, 1846. War 
was declared to exist between the United States and Mexico in the early 
part of May. The President of the United States was authorized to 
call for fifty thousand volunteers, and $10,000,000 were appropriated 
to carry on the war. The pay was about $15.00 per month. Under 
the first call for troops, Illinois was to have three regiments of infantry. 

There was at that time a militia organization, at least on paper, in 
the state, and the governor raised the three regiments through the 
officers of that organization. The order was issued for these troops 
May 25, 1846, and in twenty days a thousand more men had enlisted 
than were asked for. Alton, on account of river transportation south- 
ward, was named as the place of rendezvous. James Shields, a native 
of Ireland, who had come to Kaskaskia in 1826, at the age of sixteen, 
and had held many places of trust in Illinois, was made a brigadier 
general to command the Illinois troops. 

It was the plan to allow companies to organize by electing the com- 
pany officers, and when ten companies offered their services, the regi- 
mental organization should occur. The First regiment was recruited 
in the counties west of Springfield. Col. John H. Hardin, of Jackson- 
ville, was given command of this regiment. The Second regiment was 
a Southern Illinois regiment and the organization was as follows: 

Colonel, William H. Bissell, St. Clair county. 
Lieutenant Colonel, J. L. D. Morrison, St. Clair county. 
Major, H. T. Trail, Monroe county. 
Adjutant, A. Whiteside, Monroe county. 
Sutler, Lewis J. Clawson, 


Captains : 

Peter Goff, Madison county. 

Erastus Wheeler, Madison county. 

A. Dodge, Madison county. 

E. C. Coffee, Washington county. 

John S. Hacker, Union county. 

L. G. Jones, Perry county. 

H. L. Webb, Pulaski county. 

Julius Raith, 

Joseph Lemon,- 

Madison Miller, 

Total men in at muster, 892. 

The Third regiment was in the main an Egyptian organization. Its 
officers at muster were as follows : 

Colonel, Ferris Foreman, Fayette county. 
Lieutenant Colonel, W. W. Wiley, Bond county. 
Major, Samuel D. Marshall, Gallatin county. 
Adjutant, J. T. B. Stapp, 

Captains : 

J. C. McAdams, Bond county. 
M. K. Lawler, Gallatin county. 
Theodore McGinnis, Pope county. 
J. A. Campbell, Wayne county. 
W. W. Bishop, Coles county. 
S. G. Hicks, Jefferson county. 
James Freeman, Shelby county. 
J. P. Hardy, Hamilton county. 

Philip Stout, 

B. S. Sellers, 

The regiment numbered nine hundred and six men. Colonel Chur- 
chill, of the United States army, inspected and mustered in the men. 

Hon. E. D. Baker, at that time a member of congress, obtained per- 
mission from the secretary of war to organize the fourth regiment in 
Illinois. The regiment was accepted by the government. Nine of the 
companies were recruited beyond the limits of Southern Illinois only 
the tenth company, that of Captain Murphy, of Perry county, being 
from the south end of the state. 

The First and Second regiments left Alton under the direction of 
General Wool July 17 to 19, 1846, and landed at Matagorda bay July 
29, and by August 23, they were encamped at San Antonio, Texas. 
They left here September 26, 1846, crossed the Rio Grande at San 
Juan. Thence by the Grove of the Angels to San Fernando, a city of 
four thousand, beautifully built and luxuriantly surrounded by run- 
ning water. On the march to Monclova and thence to Parras, a city 
of six thousand. This last named city was reached the twenty-fifth 
of December. Here word came to our little army that Santa Anna 
was collecting a large army at San Luis Potosi, presumably for the 
reconquest of all the ground thus far gained by General Taylor. Gen- 
eral Wool and General Taylor united their forces in a narrow pass on 
the great road from Potosi northward, a sort of Thermopylae, a short 
distance from the village of Buena Vista, and there fought the deciding 
battle of the war in the north of Mexico. 


The Second Illinois regiment, Colonel Bissell commanding, played 
an honorable part in the battle. The report of the battle by General 
Taylor was highly complimentary to the First and Second Illinois 
regiments. Special mention is made of the services of Lieutenant 
Colonel Morrison, Major Trail, and Adjutant Whitesides of the Second 
regiment. In the battle Col. John J. Hardin of the First Illinois regi- 
ment and Colonel McKee and Lieutenant Colonel Clay of Kentucky 
were killed, and the burden for a period during the hottest of the 
fight fell upon Colonel Bissell. Captain William Woodward of Com- 
pany K, Second regiment and Lieut. Edward Fletcher, John Bartle- 
son, Rodney Ferguson, Aaron Atherton, Lauriston Robins, Allan B. 
Roundtree, William Price, Timothy Kelley and James C. Steel were 
all killed in this battle. 

The Third regiment with Colonel Foreman in command was at- 
tached to the army of General Scott, and played an honorable part 
in the siege of Vera Cruz, and in the march to Mexico, Colonel Fore- 
man being especially commended in the report by General Scott. 

The Fifth and Sixth regiments which contained few South- 
ern Illinois people did not see any service in battle but were sub- 
jected to some severe trials in marching, and in garrison duty. 

Among the Southern Illinois soldiers in the Mexican war who be- 
came prominent in the Civil war were John A. Logan, Michael K. 
Lawler, William R. Morrison, and Stephen G. Hicks. 

John A. Logan became a prominent lawyer of Southern Illinois, 
a noted Democratic politician, a member of the lower branch of con- 
gress and at the outbreak of the war raised the Thirty-first regiment 
and was commissioned its colonel. He rose rapidly in command and 
finished the war as a major general of volunteers. Michael K. Law- 
ler was born in Ireland in 1814. Came to Gallatin county in 1819. 
After returning from the Mexican war engaged in farming a few miles 
from Equality, and when the Civil war broke out he raised the Eigh- 
teenth regiment and for meritorious services was breveted a brigadier 
general. He died on his farm in 1882. William R. Morrison belonged 
to a noted family in Southern Illinois. He served as a private in the 
Mexican war, returned home and studied law, held several political 
offices and when the Civil war began raised the Forty-ninth regiment. 
He engaged in the battle of Fort Donelson where he was severely 
wounded. He resigned to serve in congress. He was a prominent 
member of that body serving as chairman of the ways and means 
committee. He was honored by appointments at the hands of both 
Cleveland and Harrison. He died at the age of about eighty-three 
at his home in Waterloo, Monroe county. Stephen G. Hicks, a native 
of Georgia, came to Illinois in time to engage in the Black Hawk war. 
He raised a company in the Third regiment in the Mexican war and 
was promoted finally to be lieutenant colonel of the Sixth regiment. 
He was colonel of the Fortieth regiment in the Civil war and was dan- 
gerously wounded in the battle of Shiloh. He eventually returned to 
his command and served with distinction till the close of the war. He 
died in Salem in 1869. Nathaniel Niles was a native of the state of 
New York, coming to Belleville in 1842. He was first lieutenant in 
Colonel Bissell 's regiment. At the battle of Buena Vista he won dis- 
tinction and was promoted to a captaincy by General Wool. When 
the Civil war came on he was commissioned colonel of the Fifty-fourth 


regiment, he was later made colonel of the One Hundred and Thirtieth. 
He held many positions of honor and trust following the return of 
peace in 1865. 

In the spring of 1847 following the return of the First and Second 
regiments from their victories, two more regiments were organized, 
the Fifth and the Sixth. The officers were as follows: 

Colonel, E. W. B. Newby, Brown county. 

Lieutenant colonel, Henderson Boyakin, Marion county. 

Major, J. B. Donaldson, Pike county. 

Captains : 

Company A, Thomas Bond, Clinton county. 
Company B, J. M. Cunningham, Williamson county. 
Company C, Vantrunk Turner, Marion county. 
Company D, John C. Moses, Brown county. 
Company E, G. W. Hook, St. Glair county. 
Company F, Thomas B. Kinney, Cook county. 
Company G, Henry J. Reed, La Salle county. 
Company H, James Hampton, Williamson county. 
Company I, R. Madison, Shelby county. 
Company K, W. Kinman, Pike county. 

This regiment proceeded to the front by way of Fort Leavenworth 
and thence to Santa Fe. Here they did garrison duty and to while 
away the time organized the first Masonic lodge in that far away city. 

The Sixth regiment was organized in Alton in May 1847. More 
companies had offered their services when the Fifth was enlisted than 
could be accepted and it was hoped another regiment would be taken 
by the government. The secretary of war wrote Governor French as 
follows: "Yielding to the earnest solicitations of the patriotic citizens 
of your state, the president has instructed me to request that your 
excellency will cause to be raised and rendezvoused at Alton another 
regiment of volunteer infantry." 

The officers were : 

Colonel, Collins, Jo Daviess county. 
Lieutenant colonel, Hicks, Jefferson county. 
Major, Livington, Jefferson county. 
Adjutant Fitch, Greene county. 

Captains : 

Company A, Franklin Niles, Madison county. 
Company B, Edward W. Dill, Madison county. 
Company C, Harvey Lee, Fayette county. 
Company D, John Bristow, Greene county. 
Company E, Burrell Tetrick, Macoupin county. 
Company F, James R. Hugunin, Cook county. 
Company G, William Shepherd, Boone county. 
Company H, G. Jenkins, Will county. 
Company I, James Bowman, Jefferson county. 
Company K, C. L. Wright, Jo Daviess county. 

This regiment proceeded to New Orleans and thence one-half to 
Vera Cruz and the other half to Tampico. Little real military service 


was seen by this regiment, but the officers and men suffered from 
change in climate and water, and much sickness prevailed. Many 
deaths occurred before the regiment returned. 

It is an old saying that military fame is a passport to political pre- 
ferment. This was certainly true in Illinois after the war. Nearly 
every man who won any distinction in the war was honored by elec- 
tion to some political position in either state or nation. 


The constitution of 1818, made when our statesmen were gathered 
from among the farmers, doctors, lawyers, traders, and woodsmen, had 
never been remodeled. It was compiled largely from the fundamental 
laws from other states, the framers not knowing from experience nor 
from history what was the vital and essential things which ought to be 
incorporated in a state constitution. The struggle of 1824 was not made 
on the ground that the constitution needed revision, although the slav- 
ery interests made a pretense of such need. The contest was a square 
fight for and against making Illinois a slave state, on the same footing, 
and in the same class as the Carolinas or Tennessee. Amendments had 
been talked of, but none ever added. 

After the defeat of the convention in 1824 nothing was done toward 
revising or amending till 1840-1. In the legislature of that year a reso- 
lution was adopted calling on the voters to express themselves relative 
to a convention at the coming state election in August. The Democrats 
favored such a convention, but when a bill passed the legislature abol- 
ishing the circuit court judges and creating five new judgeships on the 
supreme bench, all of which places were filled by Democrats, the need 
of a convention was not so apparent. 

The Democrats now controlled the legislature, the executive, and the 
courts. When the election was held in August the Democrats generally 
voted against the proposition to hold a convention, while the Whigs 
voted for it, but the proposition failed to carry. In 1845 the legislature 
passed another act calling on the people to vote on the question of a 
convention at the general election in August, 1846. The proposition 
was strongly urged upon the people by the Democratic press and it was 
not very generally opposed, so at the election in August, 1846, the ques- 
tion carried. 

The next step was to pass an act to provide for the convention. This 
act determined the number of delegates which should sit in the constitu- 
tional convention, the date of the election, which was fixed for the third 
Monday in April, 1847, and the date of the meeting of the delegates in 
the convention, the first Monday in June, 1847. There was no special 
argument against a convention while several were brought forward in 
its favor. Some desirable changes were as follows: 

1. To abolish life tenure or long tenure of office. 

2. To prohibit the legislature from involving the state in the bank- 
ing business. 

3. To limit the power of the state to borrow money. 

4. To give the governor the veto power. 

5. To increase the length of residence for the elective franchise. 

6. To take the power of electing state officers from the legislature 
and give it to the people. 


7. To fix minimum ages for members of the legislature, and for 
state officers. 

8. To abolish eligibility to several offices at the same time. 

There were a number of other changes which were considered dur- 
ing the canvass preceding the election in April. When the members 
came together June 7, 1847, it was found that the Whigs and Demo- 
crats were about evenly divided. The convention organized by electing 
Newton Cloud president, and Henry W. Moore secretary. There were 
one hundred sixty-two delegates in this body. Among these men, 
prominent on the Democratic side, were Zadoc Casey, John Dement, 
John M. Palmer, Anthony Thornton, Walter B. Scates, Willis Allen, 
L. B. Knowlton, and Thompson Campbell. The leading Whigs were 
Archibald Williams, James W. Singleton, Henry E. Dummer, Jesse 0. 
Norton, Stephen A. Hurlbut, David Davis, Cyrus Edwards, Samuel D. 
Lockwood, Stephen T. Logan, and Abner C. Harding. The session 
lasted from June 7 to August 31, 1847. 

The constitution made in the summer of 1847 differed from the one 
of 1818 in several points. There was a preamble in the constitution of 
1848 similar to the one in the constitution of the United States. Article 
II put stress upon the distinct separation of the three departments of 

In the legislative department the following features may be noted : 
No member of the general assembly shall be elected to any other office 
during his term as a legislator. The senate shall consist of twenty-five 
members and the house of seventy-five members till the state shall con- 
tain a million people. After that an addition of five in each house shall 
be, made for every increase of half million till there shall be fifty sena- 
tors and one hundred representatives, when the number shall remain 
stationary. Members of the general assembly were to receive $2 per day 
for the first forty-two days, and $1 per day for each additional day, to- 
gether with mileage each way at 10 cents per mile. The general as- 
sembly could not grant divorces, and must prohibit the sale of lottery 
tickets in the state. The state could not borrow more than. $60,000 to 
carry on the government, except in case of war, rebellion, or invasion. 
The credit of the state could not be used to advance the interests of any 
individual, association, or corporation. 

In the executive department these changes may be found : 

The governor must be a citizen of the United States and thirty-five 
years of age, and shall be a citizen of the United States fourteen years 
and have resided in the state ten years. The governor must reside at 
the seat of government. He shall have the veto power. His salary was 
$1,500 no more. The secretary of state, auditor, and treasurer shall 
be elected at the same time as the governor and lieutenant governor are 
chosen. The governor shall issue all commissions. 

The judiciary department shall consist of a supreme court, circuit 
courts, county courts, and justice courts. The supreme court shall con- 
sist of three judges elected from three judicial circuits. The term of 
office was nine years and the one whose commission bears the earliest 
date is to be chief justice. Salary $1,200 no more. Circuit judges, 
$1,000 no more. The legislature may provide for election of district 
prosecuting attorneys or county prosecuting attorneys. All judges are 
to be elected by the qualified voters. 

Some miscellaneous provisions were new. The legislature shall pass 


a general law for township organization. The legislature may pass a 
law raising revenue by a capitation tax of not less than 50 cents nor 
over $1 on all electors between twenty-one and sixty years of age. No 
state bank shall hereafter be created. All stockholders of banking asso- 
ciations issuing bank notes, are liable for all debts of the company. 
Article XIII is a declaration of rights; there are twenty-six distinct 
personal rights enumerated. A tax of two mills on each dollar of as- 
sessed valuation was authorized to constitute a fund for the liquidation 
of the state's indebtedness. 

It was further provided that if this constitution shall be ratified by 
the people, the governor, secretary of state, etc., shall be elected on 
Tuesday after the first Monday in November, 1848. The governor shall 
take his office the second Monday in January following the election and 
serve four years. 

The constitution was completed on August 31, 1847. On March 6, 
1848, it was submitted to the people for ratification. The vote on the 
constitution stood nearly sixty thousand for, and nearly sixteen thou- 
sand against. It was declared in force April 1, 1848. By the terms of 
the document itself an election should be held on Tuesday after the 
first Monday in November, 1848, for governor and other executive offi- 
cers, as well as for members of the legislature. In compliance therewith 
an election was held on Tuesday after the first Monday in November, 
1848, at which election Governor French was re-elected governor for 
four years from January 1, 1849. 

The new constitution authorized the legislature to provide for town- 
ship organization. In pursuance thereof a law was passed in 3849 
which allowed counties, when authorized by a vote of the people, to or- 
ganize under this new system. This new system of county organization 
is distinctly a New England product, and was therefore championed 
by the northern counties, which had been largely settled by immigrants 
from New England and the middle states. The legislature on February 
12, 1849, passed a general law governing all counties under township 
organization. This first law was somewhat imperfect, and has therefore 
been subject to amendments up till the present time. The general pro- 
visions may be briefly stated as follows : 

The three commissioners under the county system have been super- 
seded by a board of supervisors usually one from each township 
more properly town. 

Each town elects its own assessor, collector, supervisor, highway 
commissioners, justices, constables, poundmaster, and clerk. These offi- 
cers perform such services for the town as similar officers do for the 
county under county organization. The board of supervisors has charge 
of the public property of the county, fixes salaries, and audits the books 
and reports of all county officers. 

The legal voters of each town elect their town officers in April of 
each year, and while assembled to perform this duty they hold what is 
known as the "town meeting." In this town meeting they constitute a 
pure democracy and may enact such legislation as is within the scope 
of their authority as determined by the statutes. 

An important law which was enacted in Governor French's term 
was known as the "Homestead Exemption Law." The principle in- 
volved in this act is very old in English law. It was declared in Magna 
Charta. section 20, that in case of amercement, the punishment shall not 


extend to the deprivation of the debtor of his necessary means of mak- 
ing a living. That is, the drayman by occupation must not be deprived 
of his horse and dray, for then he and his family would become a public 
charge. The demands of society at large are paramount to those of the 
individual. Up to 1851 the only exemption was on personal property, 
and then only to the extent of $60. The debtor who might be permitted 
by this law to hold a yoke of oxen against a creditor might have no 
land to till and his oxen might be a burden to him. But the exemption 
law of 1851 provides that a householder may hold land to the value of 
$1,000 against the creditor, besides $400 worth of personal property. 
Such laws are still on our statute books and are seen to be very much to 
the advantage of the poor man who has unfortunately become involved 
and cannot pay his debts. 

Among all the matters of general interest in Governor French's 
administration nothing was more unfortunate than what came to be 
called the "State Policy." The reader will recall that under the con- 
stitution of 1818 the credit of the state might be used to foster great 
public enterprises such as banks, railroads, and canals. The constitu- 
tion of 1848, Article X, section 3, says: "No state bank shall hereafter 
be created, nor shall the state own or be liable for any stock in any cor- 
poration or joint stock association for banking purposes to be hereafter 
created. ' ' And section 6 says : ' ' The general assembly shall encourage 
internal improvements by passing liberal general laws of incorporation 
for that purpose. ' ' It was not possible therefore for the state to engage 
in any banking business or improvement schemes, but they might grant 
charters or rather pass laws which would greatly favor individual effort 
along these lines. It may also be recalled that when the state was in the 
banking business that an effort was made to build up Alton as a rival of 
St. Louis, but the city did not make very substantial progress, while St. 
Louis was growing rapidly. This state policy was nothing more nor less 
than a determination on the part of a majority of the general assembly 
to withhold charters for railroads running east and west across the 
state unless these cross roads would terminate at such points on the Illi- 
nois side of the Mississippi, and on the west side of the eastern boun- 
dary of the state, as might be designated by the legislature. These 
patriotic statesmen insisted that it was the height of folly to say that as 
great cities could not be built up within the state as beyond its limits. In 
other words they said let the western termini of all cross roads be Alton, 
and then Alton will become a great city. But St. Louis was already 
a great market for the produce of all southern Illinois, as well as a 
great wholesale and distributing point. Capitalists were anxious to con- 
nect Louisville, Cincinnati, and other cities to the east of us with St. 
Louis by railroads, but this could not be done unless charters could be 
had from the state legislature of Illinois. Such permission was refused 
in the summer of 1849. 

Then the people in the belt of counties between Terre Haute and St. 
Louis held a great convention at Salem in Marion county in which a 
plan of campaign was outlined to secure so important a public enter- 
prise as a cross railroad. There were one thousand delegates, and three 
thousand other men in attendance. It was a formidable gathering. But 
this meeting only put the state policy people to work, and as a result a 
great meeting was held in Hillsboro in Montgomery county, which was 
attended by ten thousand people. At this meeting the action of the 


legislature was endorsed and the virtue of the state policy greatly 

Missouri now took a hand in the fight by imposing a tax of $4.50 on 
every $1,000 worth of produce raised beyond the limits of the state 
when sold on the markets of St. Louis. This tax would raise about 
$150,000 annually on the produce from Illinois. The law was finally 
declared inoperative by the Missouri courts. 

At a special session of the legislature in the fall of 1849 strong reso- 
lutions passed the general assembly sustaining the state policy. The 
outside world now attacked Illinois and the matter became one of gen- 
eral interest in the east. 

The legislature of 1852 was more kindly disposed toward the best 
interests of the south end of the state, and a beginning was made by 
chartering the Ohio and Mississippi Railroad Company. This conces- 
sion was no doubt the result of efforts of Douglas and other prominent 
Illinois people in congress in consideration of the grant of land just made 
by congress for the construction of the Illinois Central Railroad. Public 
sentiment was changing, and in 1854, at a special session of the legisla- 
ture, a general law incorporating railroad companies in conformity with 
the sixth section of Article X, was passed without opposition. 


Railroads made their advent into England in the year 1822. George 
Stephenson was the engineer of the first road. In 1825 a wooden rail 
track was first used in America for the removal of excavated earth on 
the Delaware-Chesapeake canal. In 1826 Stephen Van Renssalear, of 
New York, procured a charter for a railroad from Albany to Schenec- 
tady. This was known as the Mohawk and Hudson River Railroad. It 
began operations in 1831. In 1827 the Mauch-Chunk Railroad was put 
in operation. The first built expressly for locomotives was in South 
Carolina from Charleston to Columbia. It was chartered in 1827 and 
was ready for use in 1829. The Tom Thumb, the first engine built in 
America, was constructed for a road from Baltimore to Ellicott Mills. 
It was built by Peter Cooper, of New York city. 

On January 28, 1831, the general assembly of Illinois chartered a 
canal or railroad in St. Clair county. This is the first legislation on 
railroads in this state. On February 15, 1831, a bill providing for the 
substitution of a railroad for the canal from Chicago to the Illinois 
river was passed by the legislature. From this time forward the legis- 
lature was very liberal in granting charters for railroads. But nothing 
was actually done until in 1837. In that year a railroad was actually 
put in running order in Illinois. 

Governor Reynolds says in his history, "My Own Times," that he 
was defeated for congress in 1836 and not having anything else to do, 
conceived the idea of building a railroad from the bluffs in St. Clair 
county to a point on the river opposite St. Louis, for the purpose of 
transporting coal to the market. The road was about six miles long. 
The engineer named a certain sum of money as the cost, but Reynolds 
says it cost twice as much. The road was completed in one season. 
The motive power was horses. The road was not chartered till 1841. 

Just who ought to have credit for originating the idea of a railroad 
from the junction of the Ohio with the Mississippi to the head of naviga- 
tion of the Illinois river, and perhaps with Chicago and Galena, is not 
easy to determine. It is stated that Senator Alexander M. Jenkins, of 


Jackson county, proposed a survey of a route for a central railroad 
from Cairo to Peru, in the state senate in 1832. 

On October 16, 1835, Sidney Breese, afterwards a noted jurist of 
this state, addressed to Mr. John Y. Sawyer, a prominent gentleman of 
Edwardsville, a letter in which he suggests the building of a road from 
Cairo to the north end of the state. This letter dealt with the location, 
cost, and benefits of such a road. Judge Breese afterwards said that 
the matter was suggested to him by a friend of Bond county. 

On January 18, 1836, a charter was granted by the legislature in- 
corporating the "Illinois Central Railroad Company." This charter 
provided for fifty-eight incorporators, one of whom was Judge Breese. 
Nothing of any consequence was done by this company. On the 
twenty-seventh of February, 1837, the Internal Improvement Bill was 
passed and one of the important features was a railroad from Cairo to 
the northern part of the state. $3,500,000 was appropriated for its con- 
struction. As a result of this move on the part of the state, work was 
begun on the Central road, as it was called. Work was also begun on 
other roads. The road from Jacksonville to Meredosia was practically 
completed and an engine placed on it, November 8, 1838. It was fin- 
ished to Jacksonville from Meredosia in January, 1840, and to Spring- 
field in 1842, February 15. By 1843 the state practically abandoned 
the attempt to build the railroads, though it had done considerable 
work on various lines within the state. 

The Great Western Railway Company was chartered March 6, 1843. 
This company was identical with the Cairo City and Canal Company, 
previously chartered. This company spent large sums of money in 
grading on the line from Cairo north to the southern terminus of the 
Illinois and Michigan canal. Congress had made grants of land so 
liberally to the state that it was believed it would do so for this Central 

Judge Breese and Stephen A. Douglas were in the United States 
senate in 1847; and Douglas introduced a bill for a grant of land to 
Illinois which was endorsed by Breese and passed the senate, but failed 
in the house. The old Western Company now saw a chance to get the 
grant of land and the Illinois legislature was induced to give the con- 
templated grant to the Western Company, but the gift was afterwards 
cancelled at the request of Senator Douglas. 

On September 20, 1850, congress gave to the states of Illinois, Mis- 
sissippi, and Alabama, a grant of land with which to build a road from 
the gulf to the lakes. 

The law granted the right of way through the public lands between 
Cairo and the canal, and between the north end of this line and Chi- 
cago and Galena. The right of way should be two hundred feet wide. 
Congress granted to the state every unentered, even-numbered section 
for a space of six miles on each side of the right of way ; and when the 
even-numbered section had been entered or preempted then the state 
might choose even-numbered sections in equal amounts anywhere on 
either side of the right of way to the distance of fifteen miles. The 
road was to be begun at opposite ends at the same time, and be com- 
pleted within ten years. The total grant contained two million five 
hundred and ninety-five thousand acres. 

The government by the same act which made this munificent gift 
to the state, raised the price of land along this right of way in the odd- 























numbered sections to $2.50 per acre. In a short time the land was taken 
off the market for two years and when placed upon the market again 
it brought on an average of $5 an acre. 

The gift was made to the state, and the legislature might dispose 
of it anyway it chose, provided it be used to construct the railroad. 
The government reserved the right to use the road as a public high- 
way for the transmission of armies, munitions, and other government 
property, free of charge forever. 

Probably the government intended that this reservation should in- 
clude the use of cars and engines, but the courts decided that the pro- 
vision applied only to the roadbed and not to the rolling stock. 

Notwithstanding the recent experience in railroad building by the 
state, there were those who thought the state ought to build the road. 
Then again there were all sorts of suggestions as to the towns through 
which the road should pass, and as to the point from which the branches 
should diverge. 

When the legislature met in January, 1851, there were all kinds 
of propositions presented for the construction of the Central Railroad. 
But a proposition made by a company of men from New York and Bos- 
ton attracted the attention of the legislature. It was in brief as fol- 

1. The memorialists are named as follows: 

Robert Schuyler. Robert Rantoul, Jr. 

George Griswold. Jonathan Sturges. 

Gouverneur Morris. Thomas W. Ludlow. 

Franklin Haven. John F. A. Sandford. 

Day A. Neal. 

2. They say they have examined the route proposed for the road, 
and they propose to organize a company and employ the best of talent 
in the construction of the road. 

3. They pledge themselves to build the road and have it ready for 
operation by the fourth of July, 1854. 

4. The road shall be as well built as the road running from Bos- 
ton to Albany. 

5. They agree to pay into the treasury of the state annually .... 
per cent of their gross earnings, provided the state will transfer to the 
company the lands granted by congress for the construction of the 

This proposition became the basis of the agreement between the 
state and the company afterwards known as the Illinois Central Rail- 
road Company. The rate per cent of the gross earnings of the road 
which should be paid over to the state was fixed so that it should be 
"at least" seven per cent. 

At first glance it may appear that the government was recklessly 
liberal in granting two and a half millions of acres for the construc- 
tion of this railroad. But we should remember that there were, in 
1850, thousands of acres of unentered land, lying in the central and 
north part of the state, which had lain there on the market for from 
ten to twenty-five years. The price was $1.25 per acre. And it is 
said that after the Mexican war, soldiers who had received their land 
warrants were willing to take from 50 to 60 cents on the dollar in cash 
for these warrants. In this way many people got cheap lands by buy- 
ing up land warrants and using them in locating homesteads. As soon 


Mr. Lincoln sent a short note in which he agreed to the above ar- 

At that time there were nine congressional districts in the state. 
The Seventh, Eighth, and part of the Ninth comprehended all the terri- 
tory we now call Southern Illinois. The following counties constituted 
the Seventh district: Logan, Macon, Piatt, Moultrie, Coles, Edgar, 
Clark, Cumberland, Payette, Effingham, Jasper, Crawford, Lawrence, 
Richland, and Clay. The member in congress from this district was 
Hon. Aaron Shaw of Lawrenceville. The Eighth district included the 
counties of Madison, Bond, St. Clair, Washington, Marion, Jefferson, 
Monroe and Randolph. The Hon. Robert Smith of Alton was the rep- 
resentative. The Ninth district included eighteen counties as follows: 
Wabash, Edwards, Wayne, Perry, Franklin, Hamilton, White, Galla- 
tin, Saline, Williamson, Jackson, Union, Johnson, Pope, Hardin, 
Massae, Pulaski, and Alexander. The Hon. Samuel S. Marshall, of Mc- 
Leansboro, was the representative. 

The first joint debate was at Ottawa. It was held in the public 
square and was largely attended. The second debate was at Freeport, 
and the third at Jonesboro. 


Without doubt the Lincoln-Douglas debate which occurred in Jones- 
boro, Union county, September 15, 1858, was the most memorable, pro- 
found and far-reaching political event which ever occurred in Southern 
Illinois. Southern Illinois had been the cradle of French interests in 
the Mississippi valley. It was the seat of British power west of the 
Alleghanies. Here Gen. George Rogers Clark unfurled the flag of the 
infant republic. Southern Illinois furnished the first governors, the 
first congressmen, the first United States senators, and the first supreme 
court judges of the Prairie state. The names of Nathaniel Pope, Ninian 
Edwards, Rev. J. M. Peck, Morris Birkbeck, Sidney Breese, James 
Shields. Wm. H. Bissell, John Reynolds, John Rice Jones, Elias Kent 
Kane, Jesse B. Thomas, Shadrach Bond, Daniel P. Cook, Joseph Dun- 
can, James Hall, Gustavus Koerner, John A. McClernand, Henry 
Eddy, Joseph Duncan, Elijah P. Lovejoy, Joseph Gillespie, and E. D. 
Baker were as household words in Southern Illinois. Among these 
honored sons were distinguished lawyers, profound jurists, able states- 
men, patriots, soldiers, and orators. The rank and file of the people of 
this end of the state were familiar with the above named citizens. 
They were familiar figures in the various sections of Southern Illinois. 
They had often been heard in public gatherings. They compared quite 
favorably with honored sons of other states. But when we bring Lin- 
coln and Douglas into this galaxy of bright stars, their magnitude 
diminishes perceptibly. Lincoln and Douglas were stars of the first 
magnitude and the lustre of our local stars passes into the third, fourth 
or fifth class of political luminaries. It was. therefore, a rare treat for 
the citizenship of Southern Illinois to be privileged to have the oppor- 
tunity of hearing and seeing these two men. It is not at all likely that 
either of these two men had ever been seen in Southern Illinois except 
perhaps as lawyers at the bar. It is said that Lincoln attended court 
in the old stone court house in Thebes, between 1845 and 1860. At 
any rate, the coming of these two men was an event of extraordinary 


The plan of campaign adopted by both Douglas and Lincoln was to 
have a number of speaking dates at points on the line of travel in going 
from one joint debate to the next one. Thus there were seven days 
between the Ottawa debate and the Freeport debate, and about twenty 
days between the Freeport and the Jonesboro meetings. This space of 
twenty days was used by each of the gentlemen in doing a number of 
lesser engagements throughout the country. 

Mr. Horace White, now of New York city, was at that time a per- 
sonal companion of Mr. Lincoln on all his campaigns during the period 
of the joint debate. He has left a complete itinerary of Mr. Lincoln's 
journeyings from Freeport to Jonesboro. From Freeport Mr. Lincoln 
and Mr. White went to Carlinville, where John M. Palmer and Lin- 
coln had a joint discussion. Thence to Clinton, Bloomington, Monti- 
cello, Paris, where Owen P. Lovejoy, the great abolition orator, spoke 
with Lincoln. From there to Hillsboro, Greenville, and thence to Ed- 
wardsville. This place was reached on September the 13th. Here 
Judge Joseph Gillespie presided and greatly encouraged Mr. Lincoln. 
This Edwardsville meeting, it will be noticed, was only a dozen miles 
from Alton, where the last joint meeting was to be held. From Ed- 
wardsville Mr. Lincoln and Mr. White went to Alton, thence to Spring- 
field, thence to Decatur and from that point direct to Anna on the 
Illinois Central. 

The whereabouts of Douglas from the Freeport meeting for a few 
days have not been traced, but the St. Louis Daily Morning Herald of 
Saturday, September 11, 1858, has an account of a visit of Douglas to 
Belleville. He went from St. Louis to Belleville on a special train car- 
rying twelve coaches loaded with Douglas enthusiasts. It appears that 
Douglas and Mrs. Douglas had been visiting in St. Louis. Mrs. Douglas 
accompanied her husband to Belleville. Of Mrs. Douglas the Herald 
says : "Of the beauty and grace of this lady much has been said ; and 
all who saw her yesterday are quite ready to testify, with entire truth." 

From Belleville, where Douglas spoke on the 10th of September, he 
went to Waterloo on Saturday the llth. Just where he spent Sun- 
day is not certain, but on Monday the 13th he spoke in Chester. That 
night he boarded the "James H. Lucas," a river steamboat plying be- 
tween St. Louis and Memphis. By Tuesday morning, September 14th, 
he rounded the southern end of the peninsula and steamed into the 
Ohio and within less than an hour had landed on the wharfboat at Cairo. 


In the summer of 1857, Douglas and Buchanan came to the part- 
ing of the ways. The Lecompton constitution was presented for its ac- 
ceptance. Douglas, and Governor Walker of Kansas, had both pro- 
tested against the acceptance. Buchanan yielded to the demands of the 
slave power and recommended the acceptance. Doxiglas had preached 
state sovereignty with all his might and now it looked as if his whole 
theory was to be cast to the winds by the administration. 

When Douglas reached Washington for the sitting of congress in 
December. 1857. he called on Buchanan and they went over all the 
ground. Douglas told the President that he would denounce the 
Lecompton constitution on the floor of the senate. This he did in a 
great speech in which he defined the slave power. The fight between 


Douglas on one side, assisted by a few brave souls, and the slave power 
on the other, was dragged on till June 16, 1858, when congress ad- 

Illinois Democracy sympathized with Douglas and there grew up two 
factions known as the Administration faction and the Douglas faction. 
The regular Democratic state convention met in Springfield April 
21, 1858. Douglas' course in congress was warmly endorsed. Win. B. 
Fonday was nominated for treasurer and ex-Gov. A. C. French was 
named for state superintendent of public instruction. When it came 
to the resolutions which indorsed Douglas there was a bolt of all the 
anti-Douglas delegates. They assembled in another room and after 
some deliberation called a state convention to be held in Springfield, 
June 9, 1858. The convention was accordingly held. There were rep- 
resentatives present from forty-eight counties. John Dougherty of 
Jonesboro, Union county, was named as the candidate for state treas- 
urer; and ex-Gov. John Reynolds of Belleville, St. Glair county, was 
the candidate for state superintendent of public instruction. The 
party title was the National Democratic party. Douglas was de- 
nounced by the convention and the praises of Buchanan were sung. 
The convention was in a large measure made up of federal office hold- 
ers throughout the state, together with a few disaffected politicians here 
and there. It was urged that candidates for congress and for local 
offices be put forward everywhere. 

Senator Douglas felt he must defend himself in the senate, and a 
week later made a speech in which he denounced the "bolters" con- 
vention, calling the party Danites. This name stuck to the Buchanan 
or Administration Democrats during the entire canvass. 

The Republicans had nominated Mr. D. L. Phillips, of Anna, for 
congress in the Ninth congressional district. The Regular Democratic 
organization had nominated Mr. John A. Logan, of Benton, while the 
' ' Danites, ' ' as Douglas called them, the Administration Democrats, nom- 
inated Mr. Wm. K. Parrish. In the Twenty-fifth Senatorial district 
for state senator the Douglas party put forward A. J. Kuykendall, of 
Vienna, the Buchanan party put forward Aaron R. Stout. In the First 
Representative district, made up of the counties of Union, Alexander, 
and Pulaski, the candidate for the Douglas party for state representative 
was Wm. A. Hacker ; for the Administration party, John S. Hunsaker. 

To show the disaffection of the Danites we append the vote for the 
several positions: 

For representatve : Wm. A. Hacker Alexander county, 322; Pu- 
laski county, 554; Union county, 566; total, 1,442. 

John S. Hunsaker Alexander county, 24; Pulaski county, 113; 
Union county, 620; total, 757. 

For state senator: A. J. Kuykendall Alexander county, 307; Un- 
ion county, 558 ; Johnson county, 816 ; Pulaski county, 579 ; Pope 
county, 608 ; Massac county, 636 ; Hardin county, 309 ; Gallatin county, 
610; total, 4,425. 

Aaron R. Stout Alexander county, 225 ; Union county, 561 ; John- 
son county, 29 : Pulaski county, 78 ; Pope county, 25 ; Massac county, 
27 ; Hardin county, 46 ; Gallatin county, 395 ; total, 1,386. 

It was probably because of the fact that the Buchanan forces were 
so strong in the extreme southern counties that Douglas named Jones- 
boro as the point where the joint discussion should occur in the Ninth 


Immense Gathering! 


lif.i El'. . EV 



Twelve Men Civc Cheers! 



Til. TWELVE ! 

Ye Refrigerating Committee! 


NARY CilKKlt!! 


C II IE 33 ]E*. S . 



A F"L~A G ! ^ 

Yesterday morning about 9 o'clock the 
'Jam rail. Lucas,, with the liP.iputian giant, 
OD board, Announced her coming by tho re- 
port of a tnnnon, wheroapovt tile committee 
nppointed'for the purpose hoisted their col- 
j lars, strai&hlcned ilicir hair ami mustaches, 
wiped the last "liokev" off their lips with 
their coat sleeves, and made tracka for tho 
wharf boiit. As soon as the boat landed, .1 
cannon brought frpiu Mound City Tor the 
i purpofe (tbC'.brngs piece here is n Iluchanun 
j cannon, and would certainly have bursted 
on such an occasion) commenced belchiug. 
The committee then went to the Luoas. 
Judge Dn.glas.vM visible and the chairman 
said "llow d'ye do Mr. DV" a* natural as 
possible. Mr. D. replied "1 nci tolcrnblc!" 
The rest of the committee were then intro- 
.duet'd to the circus giant,. r.EcI a procession 
was formed. 

wns Mr Doajlos! adorned on 
Op sid? bjr:Xlr..S. S. Tajlor, sis feet tw'a or 
seven ipohei .high, and on tho other by Mr. 
S. S. Brooks, five feet four innh^s high. Mr. 
Dougllu dad on a white hat, and a coat. 
;"Tho bilnnc? of the procession consisted of 
fifteen Or twenty persons who marched up to 
the top of the levee, where they were met 
by four banners, one Sag, ami ton or fifteen 
more people, M'h'b jOincJ t'uem proitiscunns- 
Ij. Tbt iojposinjr spccUile thei moved, 
IcJ on by tho immortal twelve, up to \Vnite< 
corner, tlicncc down to Bailey HarreH-s 
and. thence down commercial avenue to the 
Tailor House. I{erc was the grand display. 
Little .Mr, Douglas 'and his- Inrgo white hat 
went Aito thr-l>^l6f House parior, followed 
by several of thf> committee. About a doz- 
en of the fanhful had collected nt tho cor- 
ner, nnd one of them proposed thicc cheers 
for Mr. Douglas. An attempt was made to 
give them, but barring the nfores iid dozen 
or two it wan r,n ignominious failure. Thrco 
cheers were tht.i proposed foj- Sain M ira'iall 
which were piven bv aloat eight persons in 
the very wealiest kiud of stj-le. When Mr. 
Doagtas was ibcered, he appeared at t'jo 
pail' window, and smiled very benignly 
upon the crowd. One of the committee then 
ftppeiired at tb4 window, called the attention 
of the crowd, and stated Mr. Douglas* 
time was too much occupied with speaking 
an die could ml speak more than once aday, 
ipeflkin^ wsi^d therefore be commenced at 
"2 o'clock. Thocrowd quietly dispersed with- 
out a word, sute from one man, who exclaim- 
ed, "IVeil, It him rip, then!" Tho bund 
theu. played e! e more tun?, and everything 
was soon quitt as if Mr. Douglas w^s n>f in 
town. From the time of his arrival on the 
Lucuiti!. bcuicnched the Taylor House, there 
was not the least enthusiasm among the 
crowd not even a cheer was proposed, and 
tho mirch through the hot sun was gloomy 
indeed. Aidjgother, it waj the flattest, drv- 
est and moH insipid reception we ever saw. 


At 1 o'cluVjt Mr. D. assembled himself up- 
on a platfurui which had been erected for 
his benefit iv front of tho Taylor House, and 
diilircred bi< stereotyped speech. The re- 
mainder of- the day was spent in vari- 
ous amusements until evening, whin the 
ball commorfCed. Politics having been con- 
fined to the. kitchen, the ball went off very 
pleasantly. Judge Douglas' enthusiastic (?) 
tcceplion, v,-i'.l Ion,-; bo remembered by our 
ci.iiar.5. Terily tture as ice raise 1 ! with it. 


congressional district. Mr. A. J. Phillips now a citizen of Anna, son 
of David L. Phillips, who in 1858 was the candidate of the Republican 
party for congress in the Ninth district, says his father told him that 
Lincoln did not want to come to Jonesboro to debate, as he thought 
there was no chance to elect any of the Republican candidates from that 
region to the general assembly. But Mr. D. L. Phillips and Mr. Lincoln 
were great friends and the former prevailed on Mr. Lincoln to come. 


We have already mentioned the fact that Douglas reached Cairo 
on his way to Jonesboro Tuesday morning, September 14th. Old citi- 
zens now in Cairo have a very distinct recollection of that noted occa- 
sion. By reference to the vote in Alexander county that fall, we find 
Douglas' friend, Wm. A. Hacker, received 322 votes while Mr. Hun- 
saker received only 24. Douglas was therefore in the midst of his 
friends. However, the paper published in Cairo at that time, the Cairo 
Weekly Times and Delta, was very bitterly opposed to Douglas, as the 
extract on the preceding page will show, this being taken from the issue 
of September 15, 1858. 

From personal interviews, and correspondence with men who were 
in Cairo at the time, the following may be stated: A brass band of 
twelve pieces from Jonesboro had been engaged to come to Cairo and 
furnish music for the Douglas reception. It was under the leadership 
of Prof. Joseph E. Terpinitz. The reception committee consisted of 
Col. S. Staats Taylor, Col. John S. Hacker, S. S. Brooks, B. O'Shaugh- 
nessy, Capt. Abe Williams, Capt. Billy Williams, Mose Harrell, mayor 
of Mound City, John Q. Harmon, M. S. Ensminger, Henry H. Kandee, 
H. Too Aspern, Ed Willett, and others. The committee had provided 
a small cannon. The committee, the band, and the cannon were on the 
wharf when the James H. Lucas landed at the wharf boat. The cannon 
was fired several times and quite a crowd gathered to welcome the dis- 
tinguished guest. It seems certain, however, that enthusiasm was not 
at a high pitch. 

The band led the way and the committee with Douglas marched to 
the Taylor House, a three-story wooden hotel that stood on the south- 
west corner of Fourth and Commercial avenue. Mrs. Douglas accom- 
panied the Senator and they were guests at the Taylor House. The 
band played a piece or two and the crowd dispersed. Arrangements 
had been made for speaking in the afternoon. A few prominent people 
were guests at the hotel for dinner. 

The speaking occurred early in the afternoon. Men who were there 
seem to think the audience was not demonstrative. Evidently there 
were few, if any, of the leaders of the party present except local nota- 
bles. Capt. W. W. Williams, now of Cairo, thinks Josh Allen. John 
A. Logan and Gen. Uriah Linder were present. Captain Williams 
says Douglas seemed to be feeling the strain of the campaign and spoke 
with considerable difficulty. 

An interesting story is told by Captain Williams. He says he called 
at the Taylor House to pay his respects and was introduced to Mrs. 
Douglas in the kitchen, where she was assisting in making pies for the 
dinner or noon meal, as they were expecting many guests. Other citi- 
zens confirm the story. Hon. W. T. Dowdall. now of Memphis, Ten- 


nessee, was a prominent participant in the reception of Senator Doug- 
las, and has rendered valuable help in the preservation of the details 
of that memorable day. He has much to say of the charm of Mrs. 
Douglas. His notion is that she was of inestimable service to her hus- 
band in this noted canvass. 

It would probably not be wide of the truth to say that the visit of 
Senator and Mrs. Douglas to Cairo on their way to Jonesboro was more 
a social event than it was a political affair. Great preparations were 
made for a reception and ball to be given in the Tayor House on the 
evening of the 14th. The evening meal was served promptly and elab- 
orate preparations were made in the large dining room for the social 
functions. This feature seems to have been in charge of Hon. Win. 
A. Hacker, C. G. Simons, H. Watson Webb, and others. Professor Ter- 
pinitz and his musicians furnished the music, Senator and Mrs. Doug- 
las led the grand march. Mrs. Douglas, never weary of service in the 
cause of her noted husband, danced with many of the noted gentlemen 
present, particularly Colonel Taylor and Captain Billy Williams. Sen- 
ator Douglas needed to husband his resources for the great conflict on 
the morrow, so he retired early, but the "younger set" kept up the 
dance till the wee hours of the morning. 

On the morning of the 15th a special train stood ready upon the 
Illinois Central tracks to convey the Little Giant and his party to the 
little village of Anna, in Union county, where they would debark for 
the historic town of Jonesboro. The train consisted of several coaches; 
attached to the rear was a flat car upon which was a cannon manned 
by the "Cairo artillerymen." There was not a large crowd of Cairoites 
who went to Jonesboro. Professor Terpinitz thinks the cannon was 
fired often on the way to Anna. The country passed through was 
mostly timbered and hilly and he says the reverberations of the artillery 
waked the natives. Anria was reached about noon, and after some de- 
lay a procession was formed and the party marched to Jonesboro a 
mile west. 

The following extract from the Chicago Journal of September 16, 
1858, is of interest, as it helps to settle some matters which the oldest 
inhabitant does not remember. 

"(Special Correspondence of the Journal). 

"Just as we go to press, we received a letter from Southern Illinois, 
a portion only of which we can publish today : 

"CAIRO. Sept. 14, 1858. 

" * * * Senator Douglas with his cannon arrived here yesterday 
(it should read today) and made a speech (today) to the assembled 
Cairoites. Linder, Judge Marshall, and John Logan also had their 
say. We did not get here in time to hear the speeches. In the morn- 
ing, Douglas and his cannon proceed to Jonesboro, where he meets Mr. 
Lincoln in debate before the Egyptians, for the first time, tomorrow 
afternoon. Mr. Lincoln is already there, having come down on the 
same train which brought us to Cairo. He was received bv a number 
of friends at the depot (in Anna) and is the guest of Mr. Dresser. 

"He looks well, feels strong, and is full of courage as he has every 
reason to be. A warm time is expected tomorrow, and we hear some 
whispers of a proposed attempt on the part of Missourians and Ken- 
tuckians, who are coming over to shout for Douglas, to "put down" 


Lincoln. But we cannot believe that the attempt will be made. Mr. 
Lincoln will not be without friends at the meeting. We find that he 
is personally popular even here in Egypt." 

A correspondent for the Chicago Journal, writing from Jonesboro 
at the close of the debate, and reviewing the day 's doings, says : ' ' The 
extra excursion train from Cairo, for the State Fair at Centralia, 
brought up Senator Douglas and his cannon this evening (evidently 
afternoon as the train reached Anna about noon or shortly thereafter). 
We came upon the same train and were surprised that notwithstanding 
the cannon was fired on the arrival at each station not a solitary cheer 
was given nor any sign of enthusiasm manifested . . . between 
Cairo and Jonesboro. . . . When the train arrived at the station, 
his cannon (he always carries it with him, on an extra wood car at- 
tached to the train) fired his own salute." 

Another correspondent to the Press and Tribune says: "Shortly 
before two o'clock the people entered the fair grounds, a little north of 
the town, where the speaking stand had been erected. The inevitable 
brass cannon was there before them filling the yard with a loud noise 
and a bad smell." 


Mr. Lincoln reached Anna from the north probably about 2 o'clock 
in the afternoon of the fourteenth. He was accompanied by Mr. Hor- 
ace White, Mr. D. L. Phillips, and probably Mr. Robert R. Hitt, the 
shorthand reporter. In the letter above to the Journal, the correspond- 
ent says he was to be the guest of Mr. Dresser, but Mr. A. J. Phillips, 
son of D. L. Phillips, says his father entertained Mr. Lincoln. Mr. A. J. 
Phillips was eleven years old and he says he remembers the occasion 
in all its details. The elder Phillips had an office in a two-story frame 
building about where the Miller opera house stands and Messrs. Phil- 
lips, Lincoln, Hitt and White, possibly others, spent some time in the 
office, and later Mr. Lincoln went to the home of Mr. Phillips on the 
north side of the street from Anna to Jonesboro and remained over 
night. Messrs. Hitt and White went to Jonesboro and stayed over 
night at the Union Hotel, which is situated on the east side of the public 
square. In all probability Mr. Lincoln and Mr. Phillips were at the 
hotel for some time in the evening, for Mr. Horace White, now of New 
York, writes as follows: "The only thing I recall at Jonesboro was 
not political and not even terrestrial. It was the splendid appearance 
of Donati's comet in the sky, the evening before the debate. Mr. Lin- 
coln greatly admired this strange visitor, and he and I sat for an hour 
or more in front of the hotel looking at it." Mr. White further says: 
"The country people came into the little town with ox teams mostly, 
and a very stunted breed of oxen, too. Their wagons were old-fash- 
ioned, and looked as though they were ready to fall to pieces." 

On the morning of the fifteenth Dr. Me Vane, a prominent Demo- 
crat, who lived near Mr. Phillips, offered to take Mr. Lincoln and Mr. 
Phillips out driving. Mr. Lincoln consented. Dr. McVane was quite 
a horse fancier and drove a fine span of matched geldings. When they 
were ready to start Dr. McVane asked young Phillips to go with them 
and of course the youngster was glad of the chance. The four drove 


over to Jonesboro, around the town, and westward along the picturesque 
road leading to Willard's Landing on the Mississippi river. They re- 
turned and Mr. Lincoln made some calls, one of which was to the home 
of a Mrs. Hacker, a daughter-in-law of Col. John Hacker and wife of 
Dr. Hacker. Some years ago Mrs. Dr. Hacker gave the writer the 
story of the visit of both Mr. Lincoln and Senator Douglas. She says 
when Lincoln called she had in her arms a six weeks' old baby. She 
observed his ungainly appearance, the awkward gait, the long, bony 
hand, the kindly look in the eyes, the sympathetic conversation, etc. 
He stayed but a few moments, fondled the child and departed. Doug- 
las also called. He was tastily attired, his hands encased in kid gloves, 
and everything denoted the air of a cultured gentleman. In his visit 
to the home he strengthened the ties already strong between himself 
and the Hackers, the most influential name in the extreme south end 
of the state at that time. 

Mr. A. J. Phillips says they returned to Anna for an early dinner 
and within a short time the village was startled by the roar of a 
cannon. Everybody rushed to the station and a large crowd of people 
welcomed the Little Giant. Mr. Horace White says: "I was standing 
at the railroad station at Anna when Douglas's special train arrived 
from Cairo. My recollection is that there was a flat car attached to 
the train on which a small cannon was mounted and that it was fired 
several times after its arrival." 

Andrew J. Bunch, now seventy-five years of age, living at McClure, 
in the northwest part of Alexander county, was a young man twenty- 
one years of age at the time of the debate. He was living in Jonesboro 
at that time. He says: "Jonesboro was a small town of less than 
one thousand population. There was a large hotel on the east side of 
the square kept by a man by the name of Sheets, and one on the west 
side kept by a Mrs. Williams. The courthouse in the center of the 
square was very dilapidated. There was no floor, only a dirt floor. 
The present courthouse was just being plastered. The prominent men 
were Col. John Hacker, his two sons, William and Henry. The latter 
was a doctor. William was a very active politician. Col. John Dough- 
erty was a very prominent man. His son, Lafayette, was the United 
States marshal for the southern district of Illinois. Other prominent 
men were John E. Nail, Willis Willard, John Greer, Adam Cruse, Dr. 
Toler, William Bunch, Ephraim Kimmel, Joseph E. Terpinitz, John R. 
Miller, George Williams, Samuel Flagler, Jeff Baldwin, etc. But Jones- 
boro was almost solid for Buchanan and it was a cold reception that 
Douglas got. The reception committee consisted of the Hackers and 
Dr. Toler with others who were nominally on the committee. Slight 
preparations were made. The debate occurred half a mile north of the 
square. The reason the preparations were slight was that no Buchanan 
man would do anything toward making arrangements. The Douglas 
cannon was taken to the grounds and placed to the south of the speaker's 
stand and fired several times while Douglas was speaking. When the 
speaking was over someone shouted for Dougherty to speak and he 
took the platform, but the confusion was too great. Josh Allen got up 
and shouted for Linder, who came forward and spoke. I do not know 
what became of Douglas and Lincoln after the speaking." 

Prof. Joseph E. Terpinitz, the leader of the band, after telling of 
having some difficulty in getting anything to eat, says: "Upon arriv- 


ing at Jonesboro we were again disappointed in getting refreshments. 
The square was alive with people and streams of men and boys were 
moving toward the fair grounds. Finally the band led the way and the 
march to the grounds was taken up. I remember we were tired and 
hungry and not inclined to pay much attention to what was going on. 
But as we were going up a gentle slope near the grounds, I noticed to 
the left of the road in a path a tall, odd looking man walking along 
with his hands behind him. He wore a tall plug hat, rather long-tailed 
coat, and was a person who would attract attention in a crowd. He 
seemed in deep meditation, walking with his head down. I asked 
Who is that odd looking man? Someone in the band said that was 
Lincoln from Springfield, who was going to speak. He was not particu- 
larly with anyone, though there were many people walking along and 
his friends may have been near." 

The debate was without unusual incident. The audience was in- 
deed very small. No one has estimated it more than two thousand, 
while those who were accustomed to size up audiences place it at fifteen 
hundred. The correspondents for the city papers speak of a good dele- 
gation coming from the State Fair at Centralia, and of a good sized 
crowd from Cairo. Mr. Horace White says: "My impression was 
that the audience at Jonesboro was rather stolid, and took little interest 
in the questions discussed, but that it was composed of honest, well 
meaning, old fashioned country folks. I do not think Lincoln made any 
converts at Jonesboro. I doubt if Douglas made any or even held his 

























The joint debate between Mr. Douglas and Mr. Lincoln, which was 
held at Jonesboro on September 15, 1858, was the third of the series, 
and so thoroughly covers the ground of the questions at issue, that it 
is here reproduced verbatim. 


Ladies and Gentlemen: I appear before you to-day in pursuance 
of a previous notice, and have made arrangements with Mr. Lincoln 
to divide time, and discuss with him the leading political topics that now 
agitate the country. 

Prior to 1854 this country was divided into two great political 
parties known as Whig and Democratic. These parties differed from 
each other on certain questions which were then deemed to be impor- 
tant to the bests interests of the Republic. Whigs and Democrats dif- 
fered about a bank, the tariff, distribution, the specie circular and the 
sub-treasury. On those issues we went before the country and discussed 
the principles, objects and measures of the two great parties. Each 
of the parties could proclaim its principles in Louisiana as well as in 
Massachusetts, in Kentucky as well as in Illinois. Since that period, a 
great revolution has taken place in the formation of parties, by which 
they now seem to be divided by a geographical line, a large party in 
the north being arrayed under the Abolition or Republican banner, in 
hostility to the southern states, southern people, and southern institu- 
tions. It becomes important for us to inquire how this transformation 
of parties has occurred, made from those of national principles to 
geographical factions. You remember that in 1850 this country was 
agitated from, its center to its circumference about this slavery ques- 
tion -it became necessary for the leaders of the great Whig party and 
the leaders of the great Democratic party to postpone, for the time 
being, their particular disputes, and unite first to save the Union be- 
fore they should quarrel as to the mode in which it was to be governed. 
During the congress of 1849- '50, Henry Clay was the leader of the 
Union men, supported by Cass and Webster, and the leaders of the 
Democracy and the leaders of the Whigs, in opposition to northern 
Abolitionists or southern Disunionists. That great contest of 1850 
resulted in the establishment of the Compromise Measures of that year, 
which measures rested on the great principle that the people of each 



state and each territory of this Union ought to be permitted to regulate 
their own domestic institutions in their own way, subject to no other 
limitation than that which the Federal constitution imposes. 

I now wish to ask you whether that principle was right or wrong 
which guaranteed to every state and every community the right to 
form and regulate their domestic institutions to suit themselves. These 
measures were adopted, as I have previously said, by the joint action 
of the Union Whigs and Union Democrats in opposition to northern 
Abolitionists and southern Disunionists. In 1858, when the Whig 
party assembled at Baltimore, in national convention for the last time, 
they adopted the principle of the Compromise Measures of 1850 as 
their rule of party action in the future. One month thereafter the 
Democrats assembled at the same place to nominate a candidate for 
the presidency, and declared the same great principle as the rule of 
action by which the Democracy would be governed. The presidential 
election of 1852 was fought on that basis. It is true that the Whigs 
claimed special merit for the adoption of those measures, because they 
asserted that their great Clay originated them, their god-like Webster 
defended them and their Fillmore signed the bill making them the law 
of the land ; but on the other hand, the Democrats claimed special credit 
for the Democracy, upon the ground that we gave twice as many votes 
in both houses of congress for the passage of these measures as the 
Whig party. 

Thus you see that in the presidential election of 1852, the Whigs 
were pledged by their platform and their candidate to the principle 
of the Compromise Measures of 1850, and the Democracy were likewise 
pledged by our principles, our platform, and our candidate to the same 
line of policy, to preserve peace and quiet between the different sections 
of this Union. Since that period the Whig party has been transformed 
into a sectional party, under the name of the Republican party, whilst 
the Democratic party continues the same national party it was at that 
day. All sectional men, all men of Abolition sentiments and principles, 
no matter whether they were old Abolitionists or had been Whigs or 
Democrats, rally under the sectional Republican banner, and conse- 
quently all national men, all Union-loving men, whether Whigs, Demo- 
crats, or by whatever name they have been known, ought to rally under 
the stars and stripes in defense of the constitution as our fathers made 
it, and of the Union as it has existed under the constitution. 

How has this departure from the faith of the Democracy and the 
faith of the Whig party been accomplished? In 1854, certain restless, 
ambitious, and disappointed politicians throughout the land took ad- 
vantage of the temporary excitement created by the Nebraska bill to 
try and dissolve the old Whig party and the old Democratic party, to 
abolitionize their members, and lead them, bound hand and foot, cap- 
tives into the Abolition camp. In the state of New York a convention 
was held by some of these men and a platform adopted, every plank of 
which was as black as night, each one relating to the negro, and not 
one referring to the interests of the white man. That example was 
followed throughout the northern states, the effect being made to com- 
bine all the free states in hostile array against the slave states. The 
men who thus thought that they could build up a great sectional party, 
and through its organization control the political destinies of this 
country, based all their hopes on the single fact that the north was the 


stronger division of the nation, and hence, if the north could be com- 
bined against the south, a sure victory awaited their efforts. I am 
doing no more than justice to the truth of history when I say that in 
this state Abraham Lincoln, on behalf of the Whigs, and Lyman Trum- 
bull, on behalf of the Democrats, were the leaders who undertook to 
perform this grand scheme of abolitionizing the two parties to which 
they belonged. They had a private arrangement as to what should 
be the political destiny of each of the contracting parties before they 
went into the operation. The arrangement was that Mr. Lincoln was 
to take the old line Whigs with him, claiming that he was still as good 
a Whig as ever, over to the Abolitionists, and Mr. Trumbull was to 
run for congress in the Belleville district, and, claiming to be a good 
Democrat, coax the old Democrats into the Abolition camp, and when, 
by the joint efforts of the abolitionized Whigs, the abolitionized Demo- 
crats, and the old line Abolition and Freesoil party of this state, they 
should secure a majority in the legislature. Lincoln was then to be 
made United States senator in Shield's place, Trumbull remaining in 
congress until I should be accommodating enough to die or resign, and 
give him a chance to follow Lincoln. That was a very nice little bargain 
so far as Lincoln and Trumbull were concerned, if it had been carried 
out in good faith, and friend Lincoln had attained to senatorial dignity 
according to the contract. They went into the contest in every part 
of the state, calling upon all disappointed politicians to join in the 
crusade against the Democracy, and appealed to the prevailing senti- 
ments and prejudices in all the northern counties of the state. In 
three congressional districts in the north end of the state they adopted, 
as the platform of this new party thus formed by Lincoln and Trum- 
bull in the connection with the Abolitionists, all of those principles 
which aimed at a warfare on the part of the north against the south. 
They declared in that platform that the Wilmot Proviso was to be 
applied to all the territories of the United States, north as well as 
south of 36 degrees 30 minutes, and not only to all the territory we then 
had but all that we might hereafter acquire ; that hereafter no more slave 
states should be admitted into this Union, even if the people, of such 
state desired slavery; that the Fugitive Slave law should be absolutely 
and unconditionally repealed ; that slavery should be abolished in the 
District of Columbia; that the slave-trade should be abolished between 
the different states, and, in fact, every article in their creed related to 
this slavery question, and pointed to a northern geographical party in 
hostility to the southern states of this Union. Such were their princi- 
ples in northern Illinois. A little further south they became bleached 
and grew paler just in proportion as public sentiment moderated and 
changed in this direction. They were Republicans or Abolitionists in 
the north, anti-Nebraska men down about Springfield, and in this neigh- 
borhood they contented themselves with talking about the inexpediency 
of the repeal of the Missouri Compromise. In the extreme northern 
counties they brought out men to canvass the state whose complexion 
suited their political creed, and hence Fred Douglass, the negro, was 
to be found there, following General Cass, and attempting to speak on 
behalf of Lincoln, Trumbull and Abolitionism, against that illustrious 
senator. Why, they brought Fred Douglass to Freeport, when I was 
addressing a meeting there, in a carriage driven by the white owner, 
the negro sitting inside with the white lady and her daughter. When 


I got through canvassing the northern counties that year, and pro- 
gressed as far south as Springfield, I was met and opposed in discussion 
by Lincoln, Lovejoy, Trumbull, and Sidney Breese, who were on one 
side. Father Giddings, the high-priest of Abolitionism, had just been 
there, and Chase came about the time I left. ["Why didn't you shoot 
him?"] I did take a running shot at them, but as I was single-handed 
against the white, black and mixed drove, I had to use a shotgun and 
fire into the crowd instead of taking them off singly with a rifle. Trum- 
bull had for his lieutenants, in aiding him to abolitionize the Democracy, 
such men as John Wentworth, of Chicago, Governor Reynolds, of Belle- 
ville, Sidney Breese, of Carlisle, and John Dougherty, of Union, each 
of whom modified his opinions to suit the locality he was in. Dougherty, 
for instance, would not go much further than to talk about the inex- 
pediency of the Nebraska bill, whilst his allies at Chicago, advocated 
negro citizenship and negro equality, putting the white man and the 
negro on the same basis under the law. Now these men, four years ago, 
were engaged in a conspiracy to break down the Democracy ; to-day 
they are again acting together for the same purpose! They do not 
hoist the same flag; they do not own the same principles, or profess 
the same faith ; but conceal their union for the sake of policy. In the 
northern counties, you find that all the conventions are called in the 
name of the Black Republican party; at Springfield, they dare not call 
a Republican convention, but invite all the enemies of the Democracy 
to unite, and when they get down into Egypt, Trumbull issues notices 
calling upon the "Free Democracy" to assemble and hear him speak. 
I have one of the handbills calling a Trumbull meeting at Waterloo 
the other day, which I received there, which is in the following language : 

A meeting of the Free Democracy will take place in Waterloo, on Monday, 
Sept. 13th lust., whereat Hon. Lyman Trumbull, Hon. Jehu Baker and others, 
will address the people upon the different political topics of the day. Members of 
all parties are cordially invited to be present, and hear and determine for 


What is that name of "Free Democrats" put forth for unless to 
deceive the people, and make them believe that Trumbull and his fol- 
lowers are not the same party as that which raises the black flag of 
Abolitionism in the northern part of this state, and makes war upon 
the Democratic party throughout the state. When I put that question 
to them at Waterloo on Saturday last, one of them rose and stated that 
they had changed their name for political effect in order to get votes. 
There was a candid admission. Their object in changing their party 
organization and principles in different localities was avowed to be an 
attempt to cheat and deceive some portion of the people until after the 
election. Why cannot a political party that is conscious of the rectitude 
of its purposes and the soundness of its principles declare them every- 
where alike? I would disdain to hold any political principles that I 
could not avow in the same terms in Kentucky that I declared in Illinois, 
in Charleston as well as in Chicago, in New Orleans as well as in New 
York. So long as we live under a constitution common to all the states, 
our political faith ought to be as broad, as liberal, and just as that 
constitution itself, and should be proclaimed alike in every portion of 
the Union. But it is apparent that our opponents find it necessary, 
for partisan effect, to change their colors in different counties in order 


to catch the popular breeze, and hope with these discordant materials 
combined together to secure a majority in the legislature for the pur- 
pose of putting down the Democratic party. This combination did suc- 
ceed in 1854 so far as to elect a majority of their confederates to the 
legislature, and the first important act which they performed was to 
elect a senator in the place of the eminent and gallant Senator Shields. 
His term expired in the United States senate at that time, and he had 
to be crushed by the Abolition coalition for the simple reason that he 
would not join in their conspiracy to wage war against one-half of the 
Union. That was the only objection to General Shields. He had served 
the people of the state with ability in the legislature, he had served 
you with fidelity and ability as auditor, he had performed his duties to 
the satisfaction of the whole country at the head of the land depart- 
ment at Washington, he had covered the state and the Union with 
immortal glory on the bloody fields of Mexico in defense of the honor 
of our flag, and yet he had to be stricken down by this unholy combina- 
tion. And for what cause? Merely because he would not join a com- 
bination of one-half of the states to make war upon the other half, after 
having poured out his heart's blood for all the states in the Union. 
Trumbull was put in his place by Abolitionism. How did Trumbull 
get there? Before the Abolitionists would consent to go into an elec- 
tion for United States senator they required all the members of this 
new combination to show their hands upon this question of Abolitionism. 
Lovejoy, one of their high-priests, brought in resolutions defining the 
Abolition creed, and required them to commit themselves on it by their 
votes yea or nay. In that creed, as laid down by Lovejoy, they de- 
clared first, that the Wilmot Proviso must be put on all the territories 
of the United States, north as well as south of 36 degrees 30 minutes, and 
that no more territory should ever be acquired unless slavery was at first 
prohibited therein ; second, that no more states should ever be received 
into the Union unless slavery was first prohibited, by constitutional 
provision, in such states; third, that the Fugitive Slave law must be 
immediately repealed, or, failing in that, then such amendments were 
to be made to it as would render it useless and inefficient for the objects 
for which it was passed, etc. The next day after these resolutions were 
offered they were voted upon, part of them carried, and the others 
defeated, the same men who voted for them, with only two exceptions, 
voting soon after for Abraham Lincoln as their candidate for the United 
States senate. He came within one or two votes of being elected, but 
he could not quite get the number required for the simple, reason that 
his friend Trumbull, who was a party to the bargain by which Lincoln 
was to take Shields 's place, controlled a few abolitionized Democrats in 
the legislature, and would not allow them all to vote for him, thus 
wronging Lincoln by permitting him on each ballot to be almost elected, 
but not quite, until he forced them to drop Lincoln and elect him 
(Trumbull), in order to unite the party. Thus you find, that although 
the legislature was carried that year by the bargain between Trumbull, 
Lincoln, and the Abolitionists, and the union of these discordant ele- 
ments in one harmonious party; yet Trumbull violated his pledge, and 
played a Yankee trick on Lincoln when they came to divide the spoils. 
Perhaps you would like a little evidence on this point. If you would, I 
will call Col. James H. Matheny, of Springfield, to the stand, Mr. Lin- 
coln's especial confidential friend for the last twenty years, and see 


what he will say upon the subject of this bargain. Matheny is now the 
Black Republican or Abolition candidate for congress in the Springfield 
district against the gallant Colonel Harris, and is making speeches all 
over that part of the state against me and in favor of Lincoln, in con- 
cert with Trumbull. He ought to be a good witness, and I will read an 
extract from a speech which he made in 1856, when he was mad be- 
cause his friend Lincoln had been cheated. It is one of numerous 
speeches of the same tenor that were made about that time, exposing 
this bargain between Lincoln, Trumbull and the Abolitionists. Math- 
eny then said : 

"The Whigs, Abolitionists, Know Nothings and renegade Democrats 
made a solemn compact for the purpose of carrying this state against 
the Democracy, on this plan : 1st. That they would all combine and 
elect Mr. Trumbull to congress, and thereby carry his district for the 
legislature, in order to throw all the strength that could be obtained 
into that body against the Democrats. 2d. That when the legislature 
should meet, the officers of that body, such as speaker, clerks, door 
keepers, etc., would be given to the Abolitionists; and 3d. That the 
Whigs were to have the United States senator. That, accordingly, in 
good faith, Trumbull was elected to congress, and his district carried 
for the legislature, and, when it convened, the Abolitionists got all the 
officers of that body, and thus far the "bond" was fairly executed. 
The Whigs, on their part, demanded the election of Abraham Lincoln 
to the United States senate, that the bond might be fulfilled, the other 
parties to the contract having already secured to themselves all that 
was called for. But, in the most perfidious manner, they refused to 
elect Mr. Lincoln; and the mean, low-lived, sneaking Trumbull suc- 
ceeded, by pledging all that was required by any party, in thrusting 
Lincoln aside and foisting himself, an excrescence from the rotten bowels 
of the Democracy, into the United States senate ; and thus it has ever 
been, that an honest man makes a bad bargain when he conspires or 
contracts with rogues." 

Matheny thought that his friend Lincoln made a bad bargain when 
he conspired and contracted with such rogues as Trumbull and his 
Abolition associates in that campaign. Lincoln was shoved off the track, 
and he and his friends all at once began to mope ; became sour and 
mad, and disposed to tell, but dare not ; and thus they stood for a long 
time, until the Abolitionists coaxed and nattered him back by their 
assurances that he should certainly be a senator in Douglas's place. 
In that way the Abolitionists have been enabled to hold Lincoln to the 
alliance up to this time, and now they have brought him into a fight 
against me, and he is to see if he is again to be cheated by them. Lin- 
coln this time, though, required more of them than a promise, and holds 
their bond, if not security, that Lovejoy shall not cheat him as Trumbull 

When the Republican convention assembled at Springfield, in June 
last, for the purpose of nominating state officers only, the Abolition- 
ists could not get Lincoln and his friends into it until they would 
pledge themselves that Lincoln should be their candidate for the 
senate ; and you will find, in proof of this, that that convention passed 
a resolution unanimously declaring that Abraham Lincoln was the 
"first, last and only choice" of the Republicans for United States 
senator. He was not willing to have it understood that he was merely 


as the road was built and in operation, there was a rapid rise in the 
prices of land. Cities sprang up and farms were opened. This in- 
creased valuation of these lands soon brought in an increasing amount 
of taxes and thus the burden of the state debt was gradually lifted. 
The cost of the road, according to a statement made by Mr. Ackerman 
in 1883, at that time president of the road, was $40,000,000. The sale 
of the lands along the line of the road produced some income for the 
company, but within a few years the company was in debt over $23,- 
000,000. Mr. Ackerman further says that the road was kept from 
bankruptcy by the heroic work of its officers, assisted by Richard Cob- 
den on behalf of the English shareholders. 

The charter granted to the Illinois Central Railroad Company con- 
veyed to that corporation all the lands which congress had so gener- 
ously given to the state by the act of September 20, 1850. The pro- 
visons of the charter pertaining to the returns which the company 
should make to the state for the gift of the lands, were the result of 
much discussion and several compromises. The memorial addressed 
to the legislature by the nine gentlemen contained near the close, this 
clause : ' ' And the said company, from and after the completion of 

the said road, will pay to the state of Illinois, annually per cent 

of the gross earnings of the said railroad, without deduction or charge 
for expenses or for any other matter or cause." After a thorough 
discussion of all the interests involved, the following sections were in* 
corporated in the charter: 

Section 18. In consideration of the grants, privileges, and fran- 
chises herein conferred upon said company for the purposes aforesaid, 
the said company shall, on the first Mondays of December and June in 
each year, pay into the treasury of the state of Illinois five per centum 
on the gross or total proceeds, receipts or income derived from said road 
and branches, for the six months then next preceding. 

The same section then provides for the keeping of accurate and 
detailed records of such income, and for reports, etc., to the governor. 
Section 22 of the charter provides that all the lands shall be exempt 
from taxation till sold by the company. It also provides for the 
exemption of all the stock of the road for six years. Then follows this 
provision : 

Section 22. After the expiration of six years, the stock, property, 
and assets, belonging to said company shall be listed by the president, 
secretary or other officer, with the auditor of state, and an annual tax 
for state purposes shall be assessed by the auditor upon all the property 
and assets of every name, kind and description belonging to said cor- 
poration. Whenever the taxes levied for state purposes shall exceed 
three-fourths of one per centum per annum, such excess shall be de- 
ducted from the gross proceeds or income herein required to be paid 
by said corporation to the state, and the said corporation is hereby 
exempted from all taxation of every kind, except as herein provided 
for. The revenue or income arising from said taxation and the said 
five per cent of gross or total proceeds, receipts or income aforesaid, 
shall be paid into the state treasury in money, and applied to the pay- 
ment of the interest-paying state indebtedness until the extinction 
thereof; Provided, in case the five per cent, provided to be paid into 

the state treasury and the state taxes to be paid by the corporation, 
VOL i u 


do not amount to seven per cent of the gross or total proceeds, receipts, 
or income, then the said company shall pay into the state treasury the 
difference so as to make the whole amount paid equal, at least, to seven 
per cent of the gross receipts of said corporation. 

The first four semi-annual payments made to the state treasury by 
the Illinois Central Company consisted of five per cent of the gross 
earnings. Since April 30, 1857, the payments have heen made on a 
basis of seven per cent of the gross earnings. The first semi-annual 
payment made October 31, 1855, amounted to $29,751.59. The last 
semi-annual payment made October 31, 1911, was $620,388.12. The 
total paid into the state treasury in the past fifty-one years is $30,942,- 
282.80. In at least two instances in the past fifty years, the Illinois 
Central Company has advanced the semi-annual payment several 
months before it was due, and thus relieved the state from the embar- 
rassment of a deficit in the treasury. 

As stated above, the company has annually paid seven per cent of 
its gross earnings into the treasury with the understanding that this 
is the maximum amount to be paid in lieu of all forms of taxation. 
The attorney-general, the Hon. W. H. Stead, has furnished to the audi- 
tor of public accounts an opinion upon the subject of taxation of the 
Illinois Central Railroad Company, which briefly stated is as follows: 

1. As provided in section 18 of the charter, the said company is 
required to pay into the state treasury semi-annually on the first Mon- 
days in December and June, five per cent of the gross earnings for 
the preceding six months. 

2. Section 22 of the charter makes it the duty of said company to 
list the stock, property, and assets belonging to the said company with 
the auditor of public accounts for the purpose of taxation. 

3. It is the duty of the auditor of public accounts to levy upon 
said property as listed, an annual state tax which shall be paid as are 
other state taxes. (Provision is made that this tax shall never exceed 
75 cents on the $100.) 

4. This tax so levied and collected must be paid into the state 
treasury; and if this tax, together with the five per cent of the gross 
earnings shall not equal seven per cent of the gross earnings, then the 
company is bound by the charter to make good such deficiency. 

5. If the tax levied by the auditor of public accounts together with 
the five per cent of the gross earnings shall exceed seven per cent of 
the gross earnings the said tax must nevertheless be paid in full. 

6. The provisions of the charter apply to the Illinois Central Rail- 
road from Cairo via Centralia to La Salle, 300.99 miles ; from La Salle 
via Galena to Dunleith, 146.73 miles; from Centralia to Chicago, 249.78 
miles; total 697.5 miles. The provisions of the charter do not apply 
to any roads leased, purchased, or built by the company other than the 
697.5 miles referred to above. 

The said company listed its property with the auditor of public 
accounts from 1855 to 1859, but since that time until the spring of 
1906 it did not do so, claiming that the seven per cent of its gross 
earnings was the maximum amount which the company was required 
by the charter to pay into the state treasury. In the spring of 1906 
the company listed its property with the auditor and has continued to 
do so since. The suit entered by Governor Deneen and Attorney Gen- 


eral Stead resulted in the collection of a large amount of unpaid taxes, 
but now the road after paying in five per cent of its gross earnings and 
then submitting to taxation as any other railroad finds that five per 
cent plus the taxes does not equal seven per cent of the gross receipts 
and the deficit is made up as is shown by the following letter from the 
auditor of public accounts : 

Springfield, 111.. February 15, 1912. MB. GEO. W. SMITH, 
Carbondale, 111. Dear Sir: Replying to your favor of the 14th instant I 
beg to inform you that the value of the stock, property and assets of the Illinois 
Central Railroad Company, listed by said Company to the Auditor of Public 
Accounts as required by the provisions of "An Act to incorporate the Illinois 
Central Railroad Company," approved February 10, 1851, is as follows : 

Value of right of way $60.354,234.00 

Value of buildings on right of way 2,339,832.00 

Value of main track 24,695,733.00 

Value of Second. 3rd, 4th and additional main tracts 9,427.063.00 

Value of side and turn-out tracks 3,792,670.00 

Value of rolling stock 12,550,247.00 

Value of personal property other than rolling stock 933,329.00 

Value of stocks, bonds, cash and other assets 67,973,984.55 

Aggregate value of all property and assets $182,067,092.55 

Payments into the State Treasury by the Illinois Central R. R. Co. since 
May 1, 1906, are as follows : 

7 per cent on gross receipts for 6 mos. ending Oct. 31, 1906 $600,102.55 

7 per cent on gross receipts for 6 mos. ending Apr. 30, 1907 596,210.28 

7 per cent on gross receipts for 6 mos. ending Oct. 31, 1907 642,325.84 

7 per cent on gross receipts for 6 mos. ending Apr. 30, 1908 533,342.89 

7 per cent on gross receipts for 6 mos. ending Oct. 31, 1908 559,773.55 

7 per cent on gross receipts for 6 mos. ending Apr. 30, 1909 563,307.52 

7 per cent on gross receipts for 6 mos. ending Oct. 31, 1909 589,361.82 

7 per cent on gross receipts for 6 mos. ending Apr. 30, 1910 607,918.20 

7 per cent on gross receipts for 6 mos. ending Oct. 31, 1910 610,009.64 

7 per cent on gross receipts for 6 mos. ending Apr. 20, 1911 619,096.12 

7 per cent on gross receipts for 6 mos. ending Oct. 31, 1911 620,388.12 

The State tax rate for the year 1910 was assessed against one-third of the 
above total valuation of stock, property and assets which amounted to $60,689,- 
030.85. the tax rate extended against said valuation being 30c on the $100, and was 
computed in the assessment as follows: 
5 per cent on $8,684,545.71 gross receipts for 6 mos. ending 

Apr. 30, 1910 $434,227.29 

5 per cent on $8.714,423.45 gross receipts for 6 mos. ending 

Oct. 31, 1910 435.721.17 

State tax assessed on stock, property & assets for 1910 182,067.09 

Balance necessary to make the taxes equal 7 per cent of gross receipts. 165,912.29 

Total tax due for 1910 $1,217,927.84 

Statement of the amounts paid into the State Treasury on account of 7 

per cent of the gross receipts is as follows: 

June 1910, 7 per cent on $8,684,545.71 gross receipts for 6 mos. 

ending Apr. 30, 1910 $607,918.20 

December 1910. 7 per cent on $8,714,423.45 gross receipts for 6 mos. 

ending Oct. 31, 1910 610,009.64 

Total tax paid the State Treasurer $1,217.927.84 

Yours truly, 


Auditor P. A. 


The experience of Illinois in the banking business, had been so un- 
fortunate that there was inserted in the constitution of 1848, Article 


X, Section 5, this provision: "No act of the general assembly, author- 
izing corporations or associations with banking powers, shall go into 
effect or in any manner be enforced, unless the same shall be submitted 
to the people at the general election next succeeding the passage of the 
same, and be approved by a majority of all the votes cast at such elec- 
tion for and against such law." Section 4, of the same article pro- 
vided that all stockholders in banking associations issuing bank notes, 
should be individually responsible proportionately to the stock held by 
each, for all liabilities of the corporation or association. Since the 
winding up of affairs of the old State Bank and the Bank of Illinois 
there were no banks in Illinois issuing bank bills. The only money in 
circulation was gold and silver, and paper money from banks located 
in other states. 

In 1838, the legislature of New York passed a law which created a 
system of banking quite different from anything before tried in this 
country. This bill provided the following plan, briefly outlined: 

1. A person or persons might deposit with the comptroller of the 
state a certain amount of United States bonds, New York state bonds, 
or other state bonds, or mortgages to be approved by that officer, as 

2. The comptroller issued to such persons bank bills which when 
properly signed by the bank officers might be put into circulation as 

3. Said notes when put in circulation were to be redeemed by the 
bank when presented for redemption by the holder within a limited 
time, or 

4. The comptroller could sell the bonds deposited with him and 
redeem said bank notes. 

5. In case the state had to wind up the affairs of any such bank 
and the securities on deposit did not bring an amount equal to the 
outstanding bank notes, the available cash from the sale of the bonds 
was used in paying as large a per cent as possible on the dollar, and 
all else was lost to the bank-note holder. 

Upon the face of this law it looked as if there was scarcely any 
chance for loss to the bank-note holder and of course there could be 
none to the state as it was acting merely in the capacity of an agent 
of trust. Following the ratification of the constitution of 1848, there 
began almost immediately an agitation for banks of issue in Illinois. 
In the session of 1851 the legislature passed a banking law modeled 
upon the New York law outlined above. This law could not go into 
effect until ratified by the majority of the votes cast at a general elec- 
tion. The general election was provided for in November, 1851, and 
the vote stood for the law, 37,626; against the law, 31,405 a very 
light vote. 

This law was called the ' ' Free Banking Law, ' ' because anyone could 
Illinois state bonds, other state bonds. A provision in the law con- 
go into the banking business. That is one did not have to have a spe- 
cially enacted charter. The securities were to be deposited with the 
auditor of public accounts, and might consist of United States bonds, 
templated the depreciation in value of state bonds and so they were 
not taken for their full face value. No bank could be organized with 
a smaller bank issue than $50,000. It was also provided in the law 
that if any bank refused to redeem its issue, it was liable to a fine of 
twelve and one-half per cent on the amount presented for redemption. 


One way the bank managed to keep people from presenting their 
bills for redemption was as follows: A bank, say in Springfield, Illi- 
nois, would send $25,000 of its own issue to a bank in Massachusetts, 
say in Boston ; the Boston bank returning a like amount to the Spring- 
field bank. Each bank would then pay out this money over its counter 
in small quantities and in this way the Springfield bank issue would 
become scattered all over New England and no person holding but a 
few dollars would think of coming to Springfield to get his bills re- 
deemed. The issue of the Boston bank would be scattered through the 
west. In this way, and in other ways the money of Illinois became 
scattered in other states while in the ordinary business transactions in 
this state one would handle a large number of bills daily which had 
been issued in other states. 

No doubt many corporations went into the banking business under 
this law with clean hands and carried on a properly conducted banking 
business but there were ways by which irresponsible and dishonest men 
might go into the banking business and make large sums of money 
without very much capital invested. 

These banks were known as Wild Cat banks. The name is said to 
have originated from the picture of a wild cat engraved on the bills of 
one of these irresponsible banks in Michigan. However, they may have 
been named from the fact that the words "wild cat" were often applied 
to any irresponsible venture or scheme. 

There were, in Illinois, organized under this law, one hundred and 
fifteen banks of issue. Up to 1860 the "ultimate security" was suffi- 
cient at any time to redeem all outstanding bills, but when the Civil 
war came on the securities of the southern states, on deposit in the 
auditor's office, depreciated greatly in value. The banks were going 
into liquidation rapidly. They redeemed their bills at all prices from 
par down to 49 cents on the $1. It is estimated that the bill-holders 
lost about $400,000, but that it came in such a way that it was not 
felt seriously. This system of banking was followed by the National 
Banking System with which we are acquainted today. 

The one hundred and fifteen banks of issue which were in operation 
in Illinois just prior to the Civil war, issued nearly a thousand differ- 
ent kinds of bank bills. Because of the large number of kinds of bills, 
counterfeiting was easy, and it is said that much of the money in 
circulation was counterfeit. Bankers received reports as to the condi- 
tion of the banks over the state daily. One never knew when he pre- 
sented a bill in payment of a debt, whether or not it was of any value. 
Often the merchant would accept this paper money only when heavily 



The constitution of 1818 provided for the state election to be held 
in August of the election year. It further provided for the meeting 
of the legislature and the inauguration of the governor to take place 
in December. The first election for governor occurred in August, 1818, 
and the inauguration of that officer came in December, 1818. 

In making the new constitution the delegates wished to have the 
election of governor at the same time as that of the President, so the 
date for the election of governor was placed in November of the "leap 
year," and the inauguration of the governor and the meeting of the 
legislature set for January following. 

Governor French, who was elected in August, 1846, would have re- 
tired in December, 1850, but on account of the adoption of the new con- 
stitution he was legislated out of office and was reelected in November, 
1848, to serve till January, 1853. The governor's term is now identical 
with that of the President. 


The Democratic state ticket in 1852 was: Governor, Joel A. Mat- 
teson, Will county; lieutenant governor, Gustavus Koerner, Belle- 
ville, St. Clair county ; secretary of state, Alexander Starne ; auditor, 
Thomas H. Campbell ; treasurer, John Moore. Mr. Matteson was a 
successful business man of Joliet. He was a contractor in the con- 
struction of the Illinois and Michigan canal. Gustavus Koerner was 
born in Germany in 1809. He was highly educated having received 
the degree of LL. D. from Heidelberg in 1822. 

The Whigs put forward for governor E. B. Webb of White county; 
for lieutenant governor, J. L. D. Morrison of St. Clair county; Buck- 
ner S. Morris for secretary of state ; Charles Betts for auditor ; and 
Francis Arnz for treasurer. 

There was little excitement in the contest and the state and na- 
tional Democratic tickets were elected. Governor Matteson seemed 
to have very decided views on the affairs of the state many of which 
were crystallized into law. He recommended a new penitentiary at 
Joliet; the building of a governor's mansion; -chartering the state ag- 



ricultural society; and the most important of all was the free school 
system. This last will be discussed under the subject of education. 

The progress of the state is shown when it is stated that at the 
beginning of his term of office there were only four hundred miles of 
railroad in the state while at the close of his term there were three 
thousand miles of completed road. The population of Chicago was 
doubled. During Governor Matteson's term there was radical legis- 
lation on the sale of intoxicants. In 1855 a law resembling the "Maine 
law" was passed which was a prohibition law, but it carried a clause 
which required it to be ratified by a popular vote before it went into 
effect. When the vote was taken on the referendum clause in June of 
that year it was lost by a small majority. It is said the counties in 
the southern part of the state voted against the law. 


The period covered by Governor Matteson's term was one filled 
with important events both for the state and the nation. The Illinois 
Central Railroad was built in this time, the Republican party had its 
origin, the free school system was put in operation, and the repeal of 
the Missouri Compromise was brought about. 


During the years of Mr. Matteson's administration, there was great 
agitation in Illinois on the slavery question. The constitution of 1848 
had abolished slavery, but there were in the state quite a number of 
free negroes. The "underground railroad" was in active operation 
and had been since 1835. The fugitive slave law passed by congress 
in 1850 was very obnoxious to many people and the underground rail- 
way was liberally patronized in the years '51, '52, and '53. On Feb- 
ruary 12, 1853, the legislature passed a law concerning free negroes 
and mulattoes. This law made it a crime to bring into the state a 
negro. Again if a negro came into the state and remained ten days, 
he was liable to arrest, and to be fined $50. If he could not pay the 
fine he was sold to anyone who would pay the cost of the arrest and 
trial. This law was intended to serve two purposes; first to make it 
a crime to assist negroes into the state and in making their escape, and 
second to enable the southern slave catcher to get possession of his 
slave at the actual cost of arrest and trial. Nor was the slave ques- 
tion at all pacified by the passage of the law repealing the Missouri 
Compromise. Mr. Douglas was the champion of the bill in congress 
and when he returned to Illinois he found many of his neighbors and 
friends actively and even bitterly opposed to the measure. All over 
tho state there were speeches, conventions, and resolutions denounc- 
ing it. An active newspaper war was everywhere waged against the 
measure. The bill was passed in May, 1854, and the congressional can- 
vass was carried on through the summer months following. Douglas 
attempted to explain his action but in many places he was treated 
with scant courtesy by the disappointed people. 

There was a great disturbance in political parties and new parties 
were being formed. These shall have our attention presently. 



There was a scandal in Governor Matteson's administration which 
has left a cloud over the name of a very excellent business man and 
one who in many ways showed himself patriotic. This is what is 
known as the canal scrip fraud. It was not discovered until in Jan- 
uary, 1857, but it will be in order to relate it at this time. 

In the early part of the month named there were discovered evidences 
of extensive frauds having been committed upon the treasury of the 
state. It seems that in 1839 the trustees of the Illinois and Michigan 
canal had issued what was called "canal scrip" to the amount of 
nearly $400,000. This canal scrip was similar to bank notes and was 
issued in fifty and one hundred dollar bills. It served the purpose of 
money till the regular bonds could be sold when with the cash thus 
received these canal scrip bills were to be redeemed. 

They were all redeemed by 1842-3 excepting $316. But it appears 
that when this scrip was redeemed instead of being destroyed or can- 
celled, the bills were packed away in boxes and finally found their way 


to the capitol in Springfield. Here they were stored away and prob- 
ably forgotten. 

Governor Matteson was a rich man, and had been engaged previ- 
ously to his election in taking contracts for the building of railroads, 
canals, and other public works. He also dealt in bonds and stocks. 
Now there seemed to have been an arrangement by which old canal 
bonds, scrip, etc., should be refunded or be redeemed in cash. Just 
before Governor Matteson went out of office he presented large quan- 
tities of these canal scrip bills for redemption. They were promptly 
redeemed by the proper officers. Other large quantities were re- 
deemed. So when the whole matter came to light it appeared that 
the governor had received about $250,000 from the treasury for this 

Upon investigation the boxes which formerly contained the uncan- 
celled scrip were empty at least contained no uncancelled scrip. The 
canal commissioners testified the scrip presented by Governor Matte- 
son was the same scrip they had redeemed. Judgment was obtained 
against Governor Matteson for over $250,000. His property was seized 
and sold, and altogether $238,000 was realized; it left an unpaid bal- 
ance due the state of $27,000. Governor Matteson went into retire- 


merit and passed the rest of his days in very great quiet. He died in 
1873. It is said no one ever went out of office with brighter prospect 
before him than did Governor Matteson, but this discovery blasted 
every prospect. 


When Illinois came into the Union in 1818, there was but one party 
in this country. This was what we know as the Democratic party, 
then often called the Republican party. When Jackson became presi- 
dent, there were Jackson men and anti-Jackson men, the old Federalist 
party having run its course. In the struggle over slavery in Illinois 
from 1833 to 1837 there were two factions, but they were all Demo- 
crats. But by 1840, there were distinct political parties, the Whigs 
and the Democrats. There were also Abolitionists who might be either 
Whigs or Democrats. The Whigs were fairly well organized fom 1840 
to 1854. 

In 1852 at the Whig convention in Illinois the presiding officer 
stated publicly that there was not much chance for the Whigs but that 
they should keep up a bold front for the sake of their friends in other 
states. When the repeal of the Missouri Compromise was before con- 
gress, there was great interest in Illinois among the political parties, 
since it appeared that the line of cleavage would henceforth be be- 
tween those who favored slavery and those who opposed it. 

In many counties in Illinois there were conventions and other pub- 
lic meetings held for the purpose of protesting against the repeal of 
the Missouri Compromise. One such convention which met in Spring- 
field in October, 1854, took the name Republican. Stephen A. Douglas, 
one of the United States senators from Illinois, was the champion 
of the Kansas-Nebraska Act. Of course all southern Democrats would 
be with him, so would those southern Whigs who were slave-holders 
and wished to see slave territory extended. There were in the north 
and east Whigs who oppose the repeal of the Missouri Compromise. 
The Abolitionists, if they took any hand in the contest at all, would nat- 
urally be against the measure. All Free-Soilers were bitterly opposed 
to the repeal. The Know-Nothings were against slavery. There was 
thus in Illinois in 1854, on one side of the anti-Nebraska question, the 
Democratic party, led by Douglas, which remained loyal to the national 
Democratic administration. This party was for the repeal of the Mis- 
souri Compromise. There were on the other side of the dividing line 
Free-Soilers, Whigs, Know-Nothings, Independent Democrats, and Abo- 

The common ground upon which all or nearly all of these oppo- 
nents of the Democratic party could stand, was opposition to the spread 
of slavery into the territory of the United States. Public meetings, 
resolutions, and platforms of principles were the order of the day. In 
Kane county a meeting was held on August 19, 1854, at which the fol- 
lowing platform was adopted: 

We, the people of Kane county, in mass convention assembled, ir- 
respective of party, in view of the long continued encroachments of 
the slave power, culminating at last in the repeal of the law of free- 
dom in all the hitherto unorganized territories of the Union, will co- 
operate with friends of freedom throughout the state in an effort to 


bring the government back to first principles ; to restore Kansas and 
Nebraska to the position of free territories; to repeal the fugitive 
slave law ; to restrict slavery in the states in which it exists ; to pro- 
hibit the admission of any more slave states into the Union; to exclude 
slavery from all the territories over which the government has ex- 
clusive jurisdiction ; restrict the acquirement of any new slave terri- 
tory ; and the repeal of the inhuman and barbarous black laws of this 

This expresses very generally the feeling of the Anti-Nebraska party 
throughout the state. 

Anti-Nebraska candidates were nominated for congress, and an 
Anti-Nebraska state convention, which met in Springfield, October 3, 
1854, consisting of but twenty-six delegates, nominated a candidate, 
J. E. McClun, for the office of state treasurer. Mr. McClun's name 
was later replaced by that of Mr. James Miller. A platform was an- 
nounced and a central committee appointed. Mr. Lincoln was on the 
central committee. A vigorous campaign was made. Chase and Gid- 
dings, of Ohio, assisted in the campaign in this state. Mr. Miller was 
defeated for treasurer, but three of the nine congressmen from Illi- 
nois were Anti-Nebraska or Republican. They were Elihu B. Wash- 
burne, James Knox, and Jesse O. Norton. 

The Anti-Nebraska elements were drawn together all over the coun- 
try, and the Democrats of Illinois felt keenly the need of holding all 
their forces together. They issued a call as early as December 1, 1855, 
for their state convention, which should meet in Springfield May 1, 
1856. At this convention the Hon. W. A. Anderson, of Adams county, 
was nominated for governor. Col. R. J. Hamilton, of Cook, was nom- 
inated for lieutenant-governor. The platform affirmed that congress 
had no right to abolish, establish, or prohibit slavery in the states or 
territories. It approved the principle of popular sovereignty, the 
compromise of 1850, and declared that the foreign born citizens ought 
not to be proscribed on account of their nativity or religion. 

The Anti-Nebraska party or what came to be the Republican party, 
was very active during the year 1855, and early in that year definite 
and vigorous lines of political actions were laid out for the guidance 
of the party in the campaign before it. The Hon. Paul Selby, now an 
honored citizen of Chicago, was at that time editor of the Morgan 
(Jacksonville) Journal. Mr. Selby issued a call through the columns 
of his paper for a convention of all Anti-Nebraska editors, to be held 
in Decatur, February 22, 1856, for the purpose of formulating definite 
plans in the coming campaign. Mr. Selby was honored with the chair- 
manship of the convention, and Mr. William J. Usrey, editor of the 
Decatur Chronicle, was made secretary. There was only one funda- 
mental point upon which all agreed, that was opposition to the Kan- 
sas-Nebraska bill. There were, of course, many points of difference 
among the dozen editors present; but they were all wise enough and 
patriotic enough to leave these differences unnoticed. Strong reso- 
lutions against the Kansas-Nebraska legislation were passed, and a 
call was issued for a state convention of anti-Nebraska people to meet 
in Bloomington May 29, 1856. To further the interests of such a 
movement, this convention of editors appointed a sort of executive 
committee consisting of one from each congressional district and two 
at large, making eleven in all. This committee issued the call, appor- 


tioned the delegates, and made other provisions for the Bloomington 

The convention assembled on the 29th of May. Out of one hundred 
and two counties in the state about thirty counties were not repre- 
sented. In some instances men came as representatives having no cre- 
dentials. In other cases the properly accredited delegates were 
accompanied by scores of sympathetic citizens. There were present 
the representatives of at least four political parties Whigs, Demo- 
crats, Know-Nothings, and Abolitionists. It was not called a Republican 
convention. Prominent among those who were there were John M. 
Palmer, who was selected as the chairman of the convention, Abra- 
ham Lincoln, O. H. Browning, John Wentworth, Richard Yates, Owen 
Lovejoy, Richard Oglesby, Gustavus Koerner, David Davis, Norman 
B. Judd, Joseph Medill, and scores of others who afterward filled re- 
sponsible positions in the party organization as well as in the state 
and nation. 

The platform was a short but clear statement of the principles up- 
on which a state and national party might be grounded. There were 
six resolutions. 

1. They pledge themselves to wrest the government from the 
Democratic party by honorable and' constitutional means and restore 
it to the principles of Washington and Jefferson. 

2. They hold to the doctrine held by all the statesmen of the first 
sixty years that congress has the constitutional right to control slavery 
in the United States. 

3. They affirm that the repeal of the Missouri Compromise was 
a violation of the plighted faith of the states, and pledge themselves 
to restore by constitutional means Kansas and Nebraska to freedom. 

4. They declare their allegiance to the Union and denounce the 
disunionists who are trying to bring about its dissolution. 

5. They favor the immediate admission of Kansas with the con- 
stitution adopted by the people of the territory. 

6. Resolved, That the spirit of our institutions, as well as the con- 
stitution of our country, guarantees the liberty of conscience as well 
as political freedom, and that we will proscribe no one, by legislation 
or otherwise, on account of religious opinions, or in consequence of 
place of birth. 

A state ticket was nominated as follows: For governor, William 
H. Bissell; for lieutenant governor, Francis A. Hoffman (afterwards 
replaced by John Wood); secretary of state, 0. M. Hatch; auditor, 
Jesse K. Dubois; treasurer, James Miller; superintendent of public 
instruction, William H. Powell. 

Of course there was much oratory and not a little prophesying. 
Among those who spoke was Abraham Lincoln, but unfortunately his 
speech was not reduced to writing and it has poetically been called 
the "lost speech." Men yet living who heard it differ as to some of 
the details, but upon the main and fundamental points there seems 
to be unanimity. Mr. Herndon has said: "I have heard and read all 
of Mr. Lincoln's great speeches, and I give it as my opinion that the 
Bloomington speech was the grand effort of his life. . . . His eyes 
were aglow with inspiration ; he felt justice ; his heart was alive to 
the right; his sympathies, remarkably deep for him, burst forth, as 
he stood before the throne of eternal right." 


The Democratic party had held its convention the first of May, and 
nominated Col. William A. Richardson, of Quincy, for governor, with 
a complete state ticket. Colonel Richardson had been a representa- 
tive in congress for the past eleven years and had been a faithful ally 
of Douglas. He was considered a very strong candidate at the head 
of a strong ticket. 

There was another political party which took part in the canvass. 
It was called the native American party. It put forth Buckner S. 
Morris for governor. The vote for governor stood, Bissell, 111,375; 
Richardson, 106,643 ; Morris 19,087. 

The canvass was full of interest. The Republicans looked hope- 
fully forward to success while the Democrats saw that their only 
chance was to keep their opponents from fusing their interests. The 
Anti-Nebraska people, or the Republicans as they were beginning to 
be called, were bitterly denounced as "Black Republicans," and as 
Abolitionists. The Republicans brought in noted speakers from abroad. 
Lincoln made about fifty speeches. The Republicans made very little 
headway in the south end of the state. In eight southern counties 
there were cast for Fremont only fifty-one votes. Buchanan carried 
the electoral vote but the Republicans elected four of the nine congress- 
men, besides the state ticket. The legislature was Democratic. 



The inauguration of a Republican governor in Illinois was an event 
of no ordinary interest. The Democratic party had furnished all the 
governors since the days of Shadrach Bond. The new party was less 
than four years old, yet it held within its ranks in Illinois men who 
became famous in the halls of legislation, in high executive stations, 
on the bench as honored jurists, and as heroes upon the field of battle. 
Governor Bissell was inaugurated January 13, 1857. He had for some 
time previous to this campaign been an invalid, having been paralyzed 
in his limbs. He could walk only with the aid of crutches and then 
only with difficulty. He was not able to go to the capitol to take the 
oath, so the legislature went in a body to the executive mansion where, 
in the presence of the two houses, he took the oath of office. His inaug- 
ural address was read to the two houses. It was a very simple, plain 
document. However, it was to many members quite objectionable in- 
asmuch as the governor took occasion to discuss the slavery question in 
Kansas. "When, therefore, a motion was made in the house to print 20.- 
000 copies of the message a debate was precipitated which was so violent 
as to engender a bitter feeling among those who took part in it. 

To understand this topic it will be necessary to review some of our 
history. Dueling had been a common practice between "men of honor" 
for many years. The law of Illinois regarded dueling as murder when 
the "affair" ended in the death of either party. For being engaged 
in one of these affairs when death was not the result, the punishment 
was a disability from holding any office of honor, trust, or profit, and 
a fine. But the laws were seldom executed though many prominent 
citizens were entangled in these "affairs of honor." 


In the constitutional convention of 1847. there was found a very 
strong sentiment in favor of some measure which would effectually put 
a check to this heathenish practice. It was noticed that most of the 
"affairs of honor" had been between men who either were or hoped to 
be politicians and office holders. The thouerht was presented that the 
practice of dueling might be checked by adding to the ordinary oath of 



office a sort of iron-clad oath which could not be taken by those who 
had engaged in dueling. Accordingly, Mr. R. B. Servant, a delegate 
from Randolph county, introduced Article 13, Section 26, which is as 
follows: "That from and after the adoption of this constitution every 
person who shall be elected or appointed to any office of profit, trust, 
or emolument, civil or military, legislative, executive or judicial under 
the government of this State, shall, before he enters upon the duties of 
his office, in addition to the oath prescribed in this constitution, take 
the following oath : 'I do solemnly swear (or affirm as the case may be) 
that I have not fought a duel, nor sent or accepted a challenge to fight 
a duel, the probable issue of which might have been the death of either 
party, nor have been a second to either party, nor in any manner aided 
or assisted in such duel, nor been knowingly the bearer of such chal- 
lenge or acceptance, since the adoption of the constitution ; and that I 
will not be so engaged or concerned, directly or indirectly in or about 
any such duel, during my continuance in office. So help me God.' " 

It so occurred that Colonel Bissell, while a member of congress in 
1850, sat one day and heard a member from Virginia, Mr. Seddon, 
speak slightingly of the conduct of the Illinois troops in the battle of 
Buena Vista, and praise the valor of a Mississippi regiment which was 
commanded that day by Jefferson Davis. Colonel Bissell had the honor 
to command the Second Illinois regiment in that battle, while the la- 
mented John J. Hardin was in command of the First Illinois regiment. 
Hardin fell dead upon the battlefield and his place was taken by Lieu- 
tenant Colonel Weatherford. Both regiments lost heavily in the battle 
the First losing 45, the dead being 29 ; the Second lost 131, the dead 
numbering 62. 

Colonel Bissell resolved not to rest under the disgrace thus heaped 
upon Illinois' sons living and dead, and although a new member he 
made one of the most dashing, and brilliant speeches of the session in 
which he proved that Davis' regiment was not within a mile and a half 
of the battle at the stated time and never fired a gun in that part of 
the engagement. Colonel Bissell, fired by his patriotism and his love 
for the dead he left on the Mexican soil, marked himself as one of the 
nation's most brilliant orators. Jefferson Davis, who was then a sena- 
tor from Mississippi, made inquiry of Colonel Bissell by means of a 
note as to his reflection on the Mississippi regiment. Colonel Bissell 's 
reply was of such a nature that Davis felt called upon to challenge 
Bissell to a duel. Bissell accepted the challenge, chose army muskets 
as the weapon to be loaded with a ball and three buck shots, the dis- 
tance being forty paces. Bissell was in earnest and before the hour set 
for the duel the friends had succeeded in bringing about a compro- 
mise, and the difficulty was adjusted. 


When Colonel Bissell was elected governor in 1857. the question 
naturally arose whether he could fill the governor's chair. Colonel 
Bissell and his friends said the interpretation of the constitution was 
that the participants should have taken part in a duel in the territory 
of Illinois, but that since he was in Washington, it did not apply to 
him. After his inauguration and when a motion was made to print his 
message Bissell was violently attacked by his political opponents. It 


fell to John A. Logan to make the bitterest speech that was made. Not 
only on this occasion, but throughout Governor Bissell's term he was 
relentlessly pursued by the majority party in the house. The Demo- 
crats of the senate appear to have been less resentful. 

The summer of 1858 witnessed another very exciting contest be- 
tween the Democratic and the Republican parties. Congressmen, mem- 
bers of the lower house of the legislature, a treasurer, and a superin- 
tendent of public instruction were to be elected. The legislature which 
would meet in January, 1859, would select a successor to Senator Ste- 
phen A. Douglas. 

The campaign opened by the meeting of the Democratic State Con- 
vention in Springfield, April 21. For treasurer, W. B. Fondey was 
nominated, while ex-Governor Augustus C. French was nominated for 
state superintendent of public instruction. This convention, while 
representing the Democratic party did not endorse Senator Douglas for 
re-election to that position. Since Buchanan had been President he 
and Douglas had had radically different views as to the admission of 
Kansas into the Union, and as a result the federal administration was 
not willing to endorse Douglas for the senatorship and although the 
convention praised his course in congress, it failed formally to endorse 
his candidacy for a return to the senate. The federal office holders 
and a few anti-Douglas Democrats held a convention and nominated 
John Dougherty for treasurer, and ex-Governor John Reynolds for 
state superintendent of public instruction. This was called the Na- 
tional Democratic party. It was also called the Buchanan Democratic 
party. It received a few more than 5,000 votes. 

The Republican convention met in Springfield on June 16, 1858, 
It re-nominated James Miller for treasurer and Newton Bateman for 
superintendent of schools. But this work was not the important work 
of the convention. For months before the meeting of the convention 
all eyes in the Republican party had been turned toward Lincoln as 
the one who should contest the senatorship with Douglas. The fact 
that Douglas had broken with the Buchanan administration was re- 
garded by some in the east, especially Greeley, of the New York Tribune, 
as a most favorable omen for the Republican party. These people said 
to the Republicans of Illinois, let Douglas return to the senate, he can 
be of more service there than could a Republican. In fact some seemed 
to think that because Douglas had opposed the admission of Kansas 
with the Lecompton constitution, that he might eventually come into 
the Republican fold. This word, brought back by William Herndon, 
who had been sent east to gather up the consensus of opinion about. 
Lincoln, was very discouraging. 

But, however much the east might doubt the wisdom of Lincoln's 
contesting the election with Douglas, the Republicans of Illinois had no 
such misgivings. Cook county came to the Springfield convention with 
a banner which read Cook County for Abraham Lincoln. A down-state 
delegate proposed an amendment to the Cook county proposition. He 
proposed to substitute Illinois for Cook county and the amendment 
was passed unanimously. Lincoln was formally endorsed as the can- 
didate of the Republican party for Senator Douglas' place in the 
United States senate. 

Lincoln, knowing that he would likely be nominated or endorsed by 
this convention, prepared a carefully arranged statement of his views 


and of the line of argument he should use in the canvass. It is claimed 
by Mr. Herndon, who was Lincoln's law partner, that Lincoln showed 
his speech to a number of his friends and they all, except Mr. Hern- 
don, tried to dissuade Mr. Lincoln from expressing himself so radically. 
But Lincoln insisted on giving the speech as he had prepared it. This 
is called the "House divided against itself speech." "A house divided 
against itself can not stand. I believe this government cannot endure 
permanently half-slave and half-free." 

This speech of Mr. Lincoln was delivered from manuscript, and Mr. 
Horace White says that Lincoln regarded it as the most important of 
his speeches. The issues were joined between Mr. Lincoln and Mr. 
Douglas and there was no way to prevent a great political contest be- 
tween the two men. 

Senator Douglas returned from Washington, arriving in Chicago 
July 9, 1858, where he was welcomed by thousands of enthusiastic ad- 
mirers. He delivered a speech from the balcony of the old Tremont 
House on Lake street. In this speech he presented mainly the doctrine 
of Popular Sovereignty. On the evening of the 10th of July, Lincoln 
answered Douglas, speaking from the same balcony. Later both spoke 
in Springfield. While these were not joint discussions, they served 
the purpose of placing before the people of the two congressional dis- 
tricts in which Chicago and Springfield were situated the political doc- 
trines of the two men. 


On July 24th Mr. Lincoln addressed a note to Mr. Douglas asking 
him if a series of joint discussions could be arranged. Mr. Douglas 
in reply stated that his speaking campaign had been arranged, and it 
would not be advisable to disarrange it. However, he proposed to Mr. 
Lincoln to arrange seven appointments, one in each congressional dis- 
trict in which they had not yet spoken, and in these districts hold joint 
debates. He volunteered to select the seven towns in which the meet- 
ings might be held. 

Mr. Lincoln answered Mr. Douglas on July 29th and Mr. Douglas 
wrote finally to Mr. Lincoln on July 30th. In his letter of the 30th, 
Mr. Douglas wrote as follows: 

BEMENT. PIATT Co.. July 30. 1858 Dear Sir: Your letter dated yesterday, 
accepting my proposition for a joint discussion at one prominent point In each 
Congressional District, as stated in my previous letter, was received this morn- 
Ing. The times and places designated are as follows : 

Ottawa, La Salle county. August 21, 1858. 

Freeport, Stephenson county. August 27, 1858. 

Jonesboro, Union county, September 15, 1858. 

Charleston, Coles county, September 18, 1858. 

Galesburg, Knox county. October 7, 1858. 

Quincy. Adams county, October 13, 1858. 

Alton, Madison county, October 15, 1858. 

I agree to your suggestion that we shall alternately open and close the dis- 
cussion. I will speak at Ottawa one hour, you can reply, occupying one hour and 
a half, and I will then follow for half an hour. At Freeport, you shall open the 
discussion and speak for one hour ; I will follow for an hour and a half, and you 
can reply for half an hour. We will alternate in like manner in each successive 

Very respectfully, your obedient servant, 


HON. A. LINCOLN, Springfield, 111. 


their first choice, or their last choice, but their only choice. The 
Black Republican party had nobody else. Browning was nowhere; 
Governor Bissell was of no account ; Archie Williams was not to be 
taken into consideration ; John Wentworth was not worth mention- 
ing; John M. Palmer was degraded; and their party presented the 
extraordinary spectacle of having but one the first, the last, and only 
choice for the senate. Suppose that Lincoln should die, what a hor- 
rible condition the Republican party would be in! They would have 
nobody left. They have no other choice, and it was necessary for 
them to put themselves before the world in this ludicrous, ridiculous 
attitude of having no other choice in order to quiet Lincoln's sus- 
picions, and assure him that he was not to be cheated by Lovejoy, and 
the trickery by which Trumbull outgeneraled him. Well, gentlemen, 
I think they will have a nice time of it before they get through. I 
do not intend to give them any chance to cheat Lincoln at all this 
time. I intend to relieve him of all anxiety upon that subject, and 
spare them the mortification of more exposures of contracts violated, 
and the pledged honor of rogues forfeited. 

But I wish to invite your attention to the chief points at issue be- 
tween Mr. Lincoln and myself in this discussion. Mr. Lincoln know- 
ing that he was to be the candidate of his party on account of the 
arrangement of which I have already spoken, knowing that he was to 
receive the nomination of the convention for the United States senate, 
had his speech, accepting that nomination, all written and committed 
to memory, ready to be delivered the moment the nomination was an- 
nounced. Accordingly, when it was made, he was in readiness, and 
delivered his speech, a portion of which I will read in order that I may 
state his political principles fairly, by repeating them in his own Ian. 
guage : 

"We are now far into the fifth year since a policy was instituted 
for the avowed object, and with the confident promise of putting an 
end to slavery agitation ; under the operation of that policy, that 
agitation has not only not ceased, but has constantly augmented. I 
believe it will not cease until a crisis shall have been reached and 
passed. 'A house divided against itself cannot stand.' I believe this 
government cannot endure permanently half slave and half free. I 
do not expect the Union to be dissolved. I do not expect the house to 
fall, but I do expect it will cease to be divided. It will become all one 
thing or all the other. Either the opponents of slavery will arrest the 
spread of it, and place it where the public mind shall rest in the belief 
that it is in the course of ultimate extinction, or its advocates will push it 
forward until it shall become alike lawful in all the states, north as well 
as south." 

There you have Mr. Lincoln's first and main proposition, upon 
which he bases his claims, stated in his own language. He tells you 
that this republic cannot endure permanently divided into slave and 
free states, as our fathers made it. He says that they must all be- 
come free or all become slave, that they must all be one thing or all 
be the other, or this government cannot last. Why can it not last, if 
we will execute the government in the same spirit and upon the same 
principles upon which it is founded? Lincoln, by his proposition, 
says to the south. "If you desire to maintain your institutions as they 
are now, you must not be satisfied with minding your own business, 


but you must invade Illinois and all the other northern states, estab- 
lish slavery in them, and make it universal;" and in the same lan- 
guage he says to the north, "You must not be content with regulating 
your own affairs, and minding your own business, but if you desire to 
maintain your freedom, you must invade the southern states, abolish 
slavery there and everywhere, in order to have the states all one thing 
or all the other." I say that this is the inevitable and irresistible re- 
sult of Mr. Lincoln's argument, inviting a warfare between the north 
and the south, to be carried on with ruthless vengeance, until the one 
section or the other shall be driven to the wall, and become the vic- 
tim of the rapacity of the other. What good would follow such a 
system of warfare? Suppose the north should succeed in conquer- 
ing the south, how much would she be the gainer? or suppose the south 
should conquer the north, could the union be preserved in that way? 
Is this sectional warfare to be waged between northern states and 
southern states until they all shall become uniform in their local and 
domestic institutions merely because Mr. Lincoln says that a house 
divided against itself cannot stand, and pretends that this scriptural 
quotation, this language of our Lord and Master, is applicable to the 
American Union and the American Constitution? Washington and his 
compeers, in the convention that framed the constitution, made this 
government divided into free and slave states. It was composed then 
of thirteen sovereign and independent states, each having sovereign 
authority over its local and domestic institutions, and all bound to- 
gether by the federal constitution. Mr. Lincoln likens that bond of the 
federal constitution, joining free and slave states together, to a house 
divided against itself, and says that it is contrary to the law of God 
and cannot stand. When did he learn, and by what authority does 
he proclaim, that this government is contrary to the law of God and 
cannot stand? It has stood thus divided into free and slave states 
from its organization up to this day. During that period we have in- 
creased from four millions to thirty millions of people ; we have ex- 
tended our territory from the Mississippi to the Pacific ocean ; we have 
acquired the Floridas and Texas, and other territory sufficient to dou- 
ble our geographical extent; we have increased in population, in 
wealth, and in power beyond any example on earth ; we have risen 
from a weak and feeble power to become the terror and admiration 
of the civilized world ; and all this has been done under a constitution 
which Mr. Lincoln, in substance, says is in violation of the law of 
God, and under a Union divided into free and slave states, which Mr. 
Lincoln thinks, because of such division, cannot stand. Surely, Mr. 
Lincoln is a wiser man than those who framed the government. Wash- 
ington did not believe, nor did his compatriots, that the local laws 
and domestic institutions that were well adapted to the Green moun- 
tains of Vermont were suited to the rice plantations of South Carolina ; 
they did not believe at that day that in a republic so broad and expanded 
as this, containing such a variety of climate, soil, and interest, that 
uniformity in the local laws and domestic institutions was either de- 
sirable or possible. They believed then as our experience has proved 
to us now, that each locality, having different interests, a different 
climate and different surroundings, required different local laws, local 
policy and local institutions, adapted to the wants of that locality. 
Thus our government was formed on the principle of diversity in the 
local institutions and laws, and not on that of uniformity. 


As my time flies, I can only glance at these points and not present 
them as fully as I would wish, because I desire to bring all the points 
in controversy between the two parties before you in order to have 
Mr. Lincoln's reply. He makes war on the decision of the supreme 
court, in the case known as the Dred Scott case. I wish to say to you, 
fellow-citizens, that I have no war to make on that decision, or any 
other ever rendered by the supreme court. I am content to take that 
decision as it stands delivered by the highest judicial tribunal on 
earth, a tribunal established by the constitution of the United States 
for that purpose, and hence that decision becomes the law of the 
land, binding on you, on me, and on every other good citizen, whether 
we like it or not. Hence I do not choose to go into an argument to 
prove, before this audience, whether or not Chief Justice Taney under- 
stood the law better than Abraham Lincoln. 

Mr. Lincoln objects to that decision, first and mainly because it de- 
prives the negro of the rights of citizenship. I am as much opposed 
to his reason for that objection as I am to the objection itself. I hold 
that a negro is not and never ought to be a citizen of the United States. 
I hold that this government was made on the white basis, by white 
men, for the benefit of white men and their posterity forever, and 
should be administered by white men and none others. I do not be- 
lieve that the Almighty made the negro capable of self-government. 
I am aware that all the Abolition lecturers that you find traveling 
about through the country, are in the habit of reading the Declara- 
tion of Independence to prove that all men were created equal and en- 
dowed by their Creator with certain inalienable rights, among which 
are life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. Mr. Lincoln is very 
much in the habit of following in the track of Lovejoy in this particu- 
lar, by reading that part of the Declaration of Independence to prove 
that the negro was endowed by the Almighty with the inalienable 
right of equality with the white men. Now, I say to you, my fellow- 
citizens, that in my opinion, the signers of the declaration had no 
reference to the negro whatever, when they declared all men to be 
created equal. They desired to express by that phrase white men, 
men of European birth and European descent, and had no reference 
either to the negro, the savage Indians, the Fejee, the Malay, or any 
other inferior and degraded race, when they spoke of the equality of 
men. One great evidence that such was their understanding, is to be 
found in the fact that at that time every one of the thirteen colonies 
was a slaveholding colony, every signer of the declaration represented 
a slaveholding constituency, and we know that no one of them eman- 
cipated his slaves, much less offered citizenship to them when they 
signed the declaration ; and yet, if they intended to declare that the 
negro was the equal of the white man, and entitled by divine right to 
an equality with him, they were bound, as honest men, that day and 
hour to have put their negroes on an equality with themselves. In- 
stead of doing so, with uplifted eyes to heaven they implored the di- 
vine blessing upon them, during the seven years' bloody war they had 
to fight to maintain that declaration, never dreaming that they were 
violating divine law by still holding the negroes in bondage and de- 
priving them of equality. 

My friends. I am in favor of preserving this government as our 
fathers made it. It does not follow by any means that because a 


negro is not your equal or mine, that hence he must necessarily be a 
slave. On the contrary, it does follow that we ought to extend to 
the negro every right, every privilege, every immunity which he is 
capable of enjoying, consistent with the good of society. When you 
ask me what these rights are, what their nature and extent is, I tell 
you that is a question which each state of this union must decide for 
itself. Illinois has already decided the question. We have decided 
that the negro must not be a slave within our limits, but we have also 
decided that the negro shall not be a citizen within our limits; that 
he shall not vote, hold office, or exercise any political rights. I main- 
tain that Illinois, as a sovereign state, has a right thus to fix her 
policy with reference to the relation between the white man and the 
negro ; but while we had that right to decide the question for our- 
selves, we must recognize the same right in Kentucky and in every other 
state to make the same decision, or a different one. Having decided 
our own policy with reference to the black race, we must leave Ken- 
tucky and Missouri and every other state perfectly free to make just 
such a decision as they see proper on that question. 

Kentucky has decided that question for herself. She has said that 
within her limits a negro shall not exercise any political rights, and she 
has also said that a portion of the negroes under the laws of that state 
shall be slaves. She had as much right to adopt that as her policy as 
we had to adopt the contrary for our policy. New York has decided 
that in that state a negro may vote if he has $250 worth of property, 
and if he owns that much he may vote upon an equality with the white 
man. I, for one, .am utterly opposed to negro suffrage any where and 
under any circumstances; yet, inasmuch as the supreme court have 
decided in the celebrated Dred Scott case that a state has a right to 
confer the privilege of voting upon free negroes, I am not going to 
make war upon New York because she has adopted a policy repug- 
nant to my feelings. But New York must mind her own business, and 
keep her negro suffrage to herself, and not attempt to force it upon us. 

In the state of Maine they have decided that a negro may vote and 
hold office on an equality with a white man. I had occasion to say to 
the senators from Maine, in a discussion last session, that if they 
thought that the white people within the limits of their state were no 
better than negroes, I would not quarrel with them for it, but they 
must not say that my white constituents of Illinois were no better 
than negroes, or we would be sure to quarrel. 

The Dred Scott decision covers the whole question, and declares 
that each state has the right to settle this question of suffrage for it- 
self, and all questions as to the relations between the white man and 
the negro. Judge Taney expressly lays down the doctrine. I receive 
it as law, and I say that while those states are adopting regulations on 
that subject disgusting and abhorrent, according to my views, I will 
not make war on them if they will mind their own business and let us 

I now come back to the question, why cannot this Union exist forever 
divided into free and slave state, as our fathers made it ? It can thus 
exist if each state will carry out the principles upon which our insti- 
tutions were founded, to wit: the right of each state to do as it pleases, 
without meddling with it neighbors. Just act upon that great prin- 
ciple, and this union will not only live forever, but it will extend and ex- 


pand until it covers the whole continent, and makes this confederacy 
one grand, ocean-bound republic. We must bear in mind that we are 
yet a young nation, growing with a rapidity unequaled in the history 
of the world, that our national increase is great, and that the emigra- 
tion from the old world is increasing, requiring us to expand and ac- 
quire new territory from time to time, in order to give our people 
land to live upon. If we live upon the principle of state rights and 
state sovereignty, each state regulating it own affairs and minding its 
own business, we can go on and extend indefinitely, just as fast and 
as far as we need the territory. The time may come, indeed has now 
come, when our interests would be advanced by the acquisition of the 
Island of Cuba. When we get Cuba we must take it as we find it, 
leaving the people to decide the question of slavery for themselves, 
without interference on the part of the federal government, or of any 
state of this Union. So, when it becomes necessary to acquire any por- 
tion of Mexico or Canada, or of this continent or the adjoining is- 
lands, we must take them as we find them, leaving the people free to 
do as they please to have slavery or not, as they choose. I never 
have inquired and never will inquire whether a new state, applying 
for admission, has slavery or not for one of her institutions. If the 
constitution that is presented be the act and deed of the people, and 
embodies their will, and they have the requisite population, I will ad- 
mit them with slavery or without it, just as that people shall deter- 
mine. My objection to the Lecompton constitution did not consist in 
the fact that it made Kansas a slave state. I would have been as much 
opposed to its admission under such a constitution as a free state as 
I was opposed to its admission under it as a slave state. I hold that 
that was a question which that people had a right to decide for them- 
selves, and that no power on earth ought to have interfered with that 
decision. In my opinion, the Lecompton constitution was not the act 
and deed of the people of Kansas, and did not embody their will, and 
the recent election in that territory, at which it was voted down by 
nearly ten to one, shows conclusively that I was right in saying, when 
the constitution was presented, that it was not the act and deed of the 
people, and did not embody their will. 

If we wish to preserve our institutions in their purity, and trans- 
mit them unimpaired to our latest posterity, we must preserve with 
religious good faith that great principle of self-government which 
guarantees to each and every state, old and new, the right to make 
just such constitutions as they desire, and come into the union with 
their own constitution, and not one palmed upon them. Whenever 
you sanction the doctrine that congress may crowd a constitution 
down the throats of an unwilling people, against their consent, you 
will subvert the great fundamental principle upon which all our free 
institutions rest. In the future I have no fear that the attempt will 
ever be made. President Buchanan declared in his annual message, 
that hereafter the rule adopted in the Minnesota case, requiring a 
constitution to be submitted to the people, should be followed in all 
future cases, and if he stands by that recommendation there will be 
no division in the Democratic party on that principle in the future. 
Hence, the great mission of the Democracy is to unite the fraternal 
feeling of the whole country, restore peace and quiet, by teaching 
each state to mind its own business, and regulate its own domestic 


affairs, and all to unite in carrying out the constitution as our fathers 
made it, and thus to preserve the Union and render it perpetual in all 
time to come. Why should we not act as our fathers who made the 
government? There was no sectional strife in Washington's army. 
They were all brethern of a common confederacy; they fought under 
a common flag that they might bestow upon their posterity a common 
destiny, and to this end they poured out their blood in common streams, 
and shared, in some instances, a common grave. 


Ladies and Gentlemen: There is very much in the principles that 
Judge Douglas has here enunciated that I most cordially approve, and 
over which I shall have no controversy with him. In so far as he has 
insisted that all the states have the right to do exactly as they please 
about all their domestic relations, including that of slavery, I agree 
entirely with him. He places me wrong in spite of all I can tell him, 
though I repeat it again and again, insisting that I have no difference 
with him upon this subject. I have made a great many speeches, some 
of which have been printed, and it will be utterly impossible for him 
to find anything that I have ever put in print contrary to what I now 
say upon this subject. I hold myself under constitutional obligations 
to allow the people in all the states, without interference, direct or in- 
direct, to do exactly as they please, and 1 deny that I have any inclina- 
tion to interfere with them, even if there were no such constitutional 
obligation. I can only say again that I am placed improperly alto- 
gether improperly, in spite of all I can say when it is insisted that I 
entertain any other view or purposes in regard to that matter. 

While I am upon this subject, I will make some answers briefly to 
certain propositions that Judge Douglas has put. He says, "Why can't 
this Union endure permanently, half slave and half free ? " I have said 
that I supposed it could not, and I will try, before this new audience, 
to give briefly some of the reasons for entertaining that opinion. An- 
other form of his question is, "Why can't we let it stand as our fathers 
placed it ? " That is the exact difficulty between us. I say, that Judge 
Douglas and his friends have changed them from the position in which 
our fathers originally placed it. I say in the way our fathers originally 
left the slavery question, the institution was in the course of ultimate 
extinction, and the public mind rested in the belief that it was in the 
course of ultimate extinction. I say when this government was first 
established, it was the policy of its founders to prohibit the spread of 
slavery into the new territories of the United States, where it had not 
existed. But Judge Douglas and his friends have broken up that policy, 
and placed it upon a new basis by which it is to become national and 
perpetual. All I have asked or desired any where is that it should be 
placed back again upon the basis that the fathers of our government 
originally placed it upon. I have no doubt that it would become ex- 
tinct, for all time to come, if we but readopted the policy of the fathers 
by restricting it to the limits it has already covered restricting it from 
the new territories. 

I do not wish to dwell at great length on this branch of the subject 
at this time, but allow me to repeat one thing that I have stated before. 
Brooks, the man who assaulted Senator Sumner on the floor of the sen- 
ate, and who was complimented with dinners, and silver pitchers, and 


gold-headed canes, and a good many other things for that feat, in one 
of his speeches declared that when this government was originally es- 
tablished, nobody expected that the institution of slavery would last 
until this day. That was but the opinion of one man, but it was such 
an opinion as we can never get from Judge Douglas or anybody in favor 
of slavery in the north at all. You can sometimes get it from a south- 
ern man. He said at the same time that the framers of our government 
did not have the knowledge that experience has taught us that expe- 
rience and the invention of the cotton-gin have taught us that the per- 
petuation of slavery is a necessity. He insisted, therefore, upon its 
being changed from the basis upon which the fathers of the government 
left it to the basis of its perpetuation and nationalization. 

I insist that this is the difference between Judge Douglas and my- 
self that Judge Douglas is helping that change along. 1 insist upon 
this government being placed where our fathers originally placed it. 

I remember Judge Douglas once said that he saw the evidences on 
the statute books of congress, of a policy in the origin of government 
to divide slavery and freedom by a geographical line that he saw an 
indisposition to maintain that policy, and therefore he set about study- 
ing up a way to settle the institution on the right basis the basis 
which he thought it ought to have been placed upon at first ; and in 
that speech he confessed that he seeks to place it, not upon the basis 
that the fathers placed it upon, but upon one gotten up on "original 
principles. ' ' When he asks me why we cannot get along with it in the 
attitude where our fathers placed it, he had better clear up the evi- 
dences that he has himself changed it from that basis ; that he has him- 
self been chiefly instrumental in changing the policy of the fathers. 
Any one who will read his speech of the twenty-second of last March, 
will see that he there makes an open confession, showing that he set 
about fixing the institution upon an altogether different set of princi- 
ples. I think I have fully answered him when he asks me why we can- 
not let it alone upon the basis where our fathers left it, by showing 
that he himself changed the whole policy of the government in that 

Now, fellow-citizens, in regard to this matter about a contract that 
was made between Judge Trumbull and myself, and all that long por- 
tion of Judge Douglas's speech on this subject I wish simply to say 
what I have said to him before, that he cannot know whether it is true 
or not, and I do know that there is not a word of truth in it. And I 
have told him so before. 1 don't want any harsh language indulged in, 
but I do not know how to deal with this persistent insisting on a story 
that I know to be utterly without truth. It used to be a fashion amongst 
men that when a charge was made, some sort of proof was brought 
forward to establish it, and if no proof was found to exist, the charge 
was dropped. I don't know how to meet this kind of an argument. I 
don't want to have a fight with Judge Douglas, and I have no way of 
making an argument up into the consistency of a corn-cob and stop- 
ping his mouth with it. All I can do is, good-humoredly to say that, 
from the beginning to the end of all that story about a bargain between 
Judge Trumbull and myself, there is not a word of truth in it. I can 
only ask him to show some sort of evidence of the truth of his story. 
He brings forward here and reads from what he contends is a speech 
by James H. Matheny, charging such a bargain between Trumbull and 


myself. My own opinion is that Matheny did do some such immoral 
thing as to tell a story that he knew nothing about. I believe he did. 
I contradicted it instantly, and it has been contradicted by Judge 
Trumbull, while nobody has produced any proof, because there is 
none. Now, whether the speech which the Judge brings forward here 
is really the one Matheny made I do not know, and I hope the Judge 
will pardon me for doubting the genuineness of this document, since 
his production of those Springfield resolutions at Ottawa. 1 do not 
wish to dwell at any great length upon this matter. I can say noth- 
ing when a long story like this is told, except it is not true, and demand 
that he who insists upon it shall produce some proof. That is all any 
man can do, and I leave it that way, for I know of no other way of 
dealing with it. 

The Judge has gone over a long account of the old Whig and Demo- 
cratic parties, and it connects itself with this charge against Trumbull 
and myself. He says that they agreed upon a compromise in regard 
to the slavery question in 1850; that in a national Democratic conven- 
tion resolutions were passed to abide by that compromise as a finality 
upon the slavery question. He also says that the Whig party in national 
convention agreed to abide by and regard as a finality the Compromise 
of 1850. I understand the Judge to be altogether right about that; 
I understand that part of the history of the country as stated by him 
to be correct. I recollect that I, as a member of that party, acquiesced 
in that compromise. I recollect in the presidential election which fol- 
lowed, when we had General Scott up for the presidency, Judge Doug- 
las was around berating us Whigs as Abolitionists, precisely as he does 
today not a bit of difference. I have often heard him. We could do 
nothing when the old Whig party was alive that was not Abolitionism, 
but it has got an extremely good name since it has passed away. 

When that compromise was made it did not repeal the old Missouri 
Compromise. It left a region of United States territory half as large 
as the present territory of the United States, north of the line of 36 
degrees 30 minutes, in which slavery was prohibited by act of congress. 
This compromise did not repeal that one. It did not affect or propose 
to repeal it. But at last it became Judge Douglas's duty as he 
thought (and I find no fault with him), as chairman of the commit- 
tee on territories, to bring in a bill for the organization of a territorial 
government first of one, then of two territories north of that line. 
When he did so it ended in his inserting a provision substantially re- 
pealing the Missouri Compromise. That was because the Compromise 
of 1850 had not repealed it. And now I ask why he could not have let 
that compromise alone? We were quiet from the agitation of the slav- 
ery question. We were making no fuss about it. All had acquiesced 
in the compromise measures of 1850. We never had been seriously dis- 
turbed by any abolition agitation before that period. When he came 
to form governments for the territories north of the line of 36 degrees 
30 minutes, why could he not have let that matter stand as it was 
standing? Was it necessary to the organization of a territory? Not 
at all. Iowa lay north of the line and had been organized as a terri- 
tory and come into the Union as a state without disturbing that com- 
promise. There was no sort of necessity for destroying it to organize 
these territories. But, gentlemen, it would take up all my time to meet 
all the little quibbling arguments of Judge Douglas to show that the 


Missouri Compromise was repealed by the Compromise of 1850. My, 
own opinion is, that a careful investigation of all the arguments to 
sustain the position that that compromise was virtually repealed by 
the Compromise of 1850, would show that they are the merest fallacies. 
I have the report that Judge Douglas first brought into congress at the 
time of the introduction of the Nebraska bill, which in its original form 
did not repeal the Missouri Compromise, and he there expressly stated 
that he had forborne to do so because it had not been done by the 
Compromise of 1850. I close this part of the discussion on my part by 
asking him the question again, "Why, when we had peace under the 
Missouri Compromise, could you not have let it alone?" 

In complaining of what I said in my speech at Springfield, in which 
he says I accepted my nomination for the senate rship (where, by the 
way, he is at fault, for if he will examine it, he will find no acceptance 
in it), he again quotes that portion in which I said that "a house 
divided against itself cannot stand." Let me say a word in regard to 
that matter. 

He tries to persuade us that there must be a variety in the different 
institutions of the states of the Union; that that variety necessarily 
proceeds from the variety of soil, climate, of the face of the country, 
and the difference in the natural features of the states. I agree to all 
that. Have these very matters ever produced any difficulty amongst 
us? Not at all. Have we ever had any quarrel over the fact that they 
have laws in Louisiana designed to regulate the commerce that springs 
from the production of sugar? Or because we have a different class 
relative to the production of flour in this state? Have they produced 
any differences? Not at all. They are the very cements of this Union. 
They don't make the house a house divided against itself. They are 
the props that hold up the house and sustain the Union. 

But has it been so with this element of slavery? Have we not al- 
ways had quarrels and difficulties over it? And when will we cease to 
have quarrels over it? Like causes produce like effects. It is worth 
while to observe that we have generally had comparative peace upon 
the slavery question, and that there has been no cause for alarm until 
it was excited by the effort to spread it into new territory. Whenever 
it has been limited to its present bounds, and there has been no effort 
to spread it, there has been peace. All the trouble and convulsion has 
proceeded from efforts to spread it over more territory. It was thus 
at the date of the Missouri Compromise. It was so again with the an- 
nexation of Texas; so with the territory acquired by the Mexican war, 
and it is so now. Whenever there has been an effort to spread it there 
has been agitation and resistance. Now, I appeal to this audience 
(very few of whom are my political friends), as national men, whether 
we have reason to expect that the agitation in regard to this subject 
will cease while the causes that tend to reproduce agitation are actively 
at work? Will not the same cause that produced agitation in 1820, 
when the Missouri Compromise was formed that which produced the 
agitation upon the annexation of Texas, and at other times work out 
the same results always? Do you think that the nature of man will be 
changed that the same causes that produced agitation at one time will 
not have the same effect at another? 

This has been the result so far as my observation of the slavery 
question and my reading in history extends. What right have we then 


to hope that the trouble will cease that the agitation will come to an 
end until it shall either be placed back where it originally stood, and 
where the fathers originally placed it, or, on the other hand, until it 
shall entirely master all opposition? This is the view I entertain, and 
this is the reason why I entertained it, as Judge Douglas has read from 
my Springfield speech. 

Now, iny friends, there is one other thing that I feel myself under 
some sort of obligation to mention. Judge Douglas has here to-day in 
a very rambling way, I was about saying spoken of the platforms for 
which he seeks to hold me responsible. He says, "Why can't you come 
out and make an open avowal of principles in all places alike?" and 
he reads from an advertisement that he says was used to notify the 
people of a speech to be made by Judge Trumbull at Waterloo. In 
commenting on it he desires to know whether we cannot speak frankly 
and manfully as he and his friends do ! How, I ask, do his friends speak 
out their own sentiments? A convention of his party in this state 
met on the twenty-first of April, at Springfield, and passed a set of 
resolutions which they proclaim to the country as their platform. This 
does constitute their platform, and it is because Judge Douglas claims 
it as his platform that these are his principles and purposes that he 
has a right to declare he speaks his sentiments "frankly and man- 
fully. ' ' On the ninth of June, Colonel John Dougherty, Governor Rey- 
nolds and others, calling themselves National Democrats, met in Spring- 
field and adopted a set of resolutions which are as easily understood, as 
plain and as definite in stating to the country and to the world what 
they believed in and would stand upon, as Judge Douglas's platform. 
Now, what is the reason, that Judge Douglas is not willing that Colonel 
Dougherty and Governor Reynolds should stand upon their own writ- 
ten and printed platform as well as he upon his? Why must he look 
farther than their platform when he claims himself to stand by his 
platform 1 

Again, in reference to our platform: On the sixteenth of June, 
the Republicans had their convention and published their platform, 
which is as clear and distinct as Judge Douglas's. In it they spoke 
their principles as plainly and as definitely to the world. What is the 
reason that Judge Douglas is not willing I should stand upon that plat- 
form? Why must he go round hunting for some one who is support- 
ing me, or has supported me, at some time in his life, and who has said 
something at some time contrary to that platform ? Does the Judge re- 
gard that rule as a good one? If it turn out that that rule is a good 
one for me that I am responsible for any and every opinion that any 
man has expressed who is my friend then it is a good rule for him. I 
ask, is it not as good a rule for him as it. is for me? In my opinion, it 
is not a good rule for either one of us. Do you think differently, Judge ? 

Mr. Douglas "I do not." 

Mr. Lincoln Judge Douglas says he does not thing differently. I 
am glad of it. Then can he tell me why he is looking up resolutions of 
five or six years ago, and insisting that they were my platform, not- 
withstanding my protest that they are not, and never were my plat- 
form, and my. pointing out the platform of the state convention which 
he delights to say nominated me for the senate? I cannot see what he 
means by parading these resolutions, if it is not to hold me responsible 
for them in some way. If he says to me here, that he does not hold the 


rule to be good, one way or the other, I do not comprehend how he could 
answer me more fully if he answered me at greater length. I will 
therefore put in as my answer to the resolutions that he has hunted up 
against me, what I, as a lawyer would call a good plea to a bad declar- 
ation. I understand that it is a maxim of law that a poor plea may 
be a good plea to a bad declaration. I think that the opinions the 
Judge brings from those who support me, yet differ from me, is a bad 
declaration against me ; but if I can bring the same things against him, 
I am putting in a good plea to that kind of declaration, and now I 
propose to try it. 

At Freeport Judge Douglas occupied a large part of his time in 
producing resolutions and documents of various sorts, as I understood, 
to make me somehow responsible for them; and I propose now doing 
a little of the same sort of thing for him. In 1850 a very clever gentle- 
man by the name of Thompson Campbell, a personal friend of Judge 
Douglas and myself, a political friend of Judge Douglas and opponent 
of mine, was a candidate for congress in the Galena district. He was 
interrogated as to his views on this same slavery question. I have here 
before me the interrogatories and Campbell's answers to them. I will 
read them : 


1st. Will you, If elected, vote for and cordially support a bill prohibiting 
slavery in the territories of the United States? 

2d. Will you vote for and support a bill abolishing slavery in the District 
of Columbia? 

3d. Will you oppose the admission of any slave states which may be formed 
out of Texas or the territories? 

4th. Will you vote for and advocate the repeal of the Fugitive Slave law 
passed at the recent session of Congress? 

5th. Will you advocate and vote for the election of a speaker of the house 
of representatives who shall be willing to organize the committee of that house 
so as to give the free states their just influence in the business of legislation? 

Gth. What are your views, not only as to tfie constitutional right of con- 
gress to prohibit the slave-trade between the states, but also as to the expediency 
of exercising that right immediately? 


To the first and second interrogatories, I answer unequivocally In the 

To the third interrogatory I reply, that I am opposed to the admission of 
any more slave states into the union, that may be formed out of Texan or any 
other territory. 

To the fourth and fifth interrogatories I unhesitatingly answer in the 

To the sixth interrogatory I reply, that so long as the slave states continue 
to treat slaves as articles of commerce, the constitution confers power on con- 
gress to pass laws regulating that peculiar COMMERCE, and that the protection 
of human rights imperatively demands the interposition of every constitutional 
means to prevent this most inhuman and iniquitous traffic. 


I want to say here that Thompson Campbell was elected to congress 
on that platform, as the Democratic candidate in the Galena district, 
against Martin P. Sweet. 

Judge Douglas " Give me the date of that letter." 
Mr. Lincoln The time Campbell ran was in 1850. I have not 
the exact date here. It was some time in 1850 that these interroga- 
tories were put and the answer given. Campbell was elected to con- 


gress, and served out his term. I think a second election came up be- 
fore he served out his term, and he was not re-elected. Whether de- 
feated or not nominated, I do not know. [Mr. Campbell was nominated 
for re-election by the Democratic party by acclamation.] At the end 
of his term his very good friend, Judge Douglas, got him a high office 
from President Pierce, and sent him off to California. Is not that the 
fact ? Just at the end of his term in congress it appears that our mutual 
friend Judge Douglas got our mutual friend Campbell a good office, 
and sent him to California upon it. And not only so, but on the twenty- 
seventh of last month, when Judge Douglas and myself spoke at Free- 
port, in joint discussion, there was his same friend Campbell, come all 
the way from California, to help the Judge beat me; and there was 
poor Martin P. Sweet standing on the platform, trying to help poor 
me to be elected. That is true of one of Judge Douglas 's friends. 

So again, in that same race of 1850, there was a congressional con- 
vention assembled at Joliet, and it nominated R. S. Molony for con- 
gress and unanimously adopted the following resolution: 

Resolved, That we are uncompromisingly opposed to the extension of slavery ; 
and while we would not make such opposition a ground of interference with the 
interests of the states where it exists, yet we moderately but firmly insist that 
it is the duty of congress to oppose its extension into territory now free, by all 
means compatible with the obligations of the constitution, and with good faith 
to our sister states; that these principles were recognized by the Ordinance of 
1787, which received the sanction of Thomas Jefferson, who is acknowledged by 
all to be the great oracle and expounder of our faith. 

Subsequently the same interrogatories were propounded to Dr. 
Molony which had been addressed to Campbell, as above, with the ex- 
ception of the sixth, respecting the inter-state slave-trade, to which Dr. 
Molony, the Democratic nominee for congress replied as follows: 

I received the written interrogatories this day, and as you will see by the 
La Salle Democrat and Ottawa Free Trader, I took at Peru on the 5th and at 
Ottawa on the 7th, the affirmative side of interrogatories 1st and 2d, and in re- 
lation to the admission of any more slave states from free territory, my posi- 
tion taken at these meetings, as correctly reported in said papers, was emphat- 
ically and distinctly opposed to it. In relation to the admission of any more 
slave States from Texas, whether I shall go against it or not will depend upon 
the opinion that I may hereafter form of the true meaning and nature of the 
resolutions of annexation. If, by said resolutions, the honor and good faith of 
the nation is pledged to admit more slave states from Texas when she (Texas) 
may apply for the admission of such state, then I should, if in congress, vote 
for their admission. But if not so PLEDGED and bound by sacred contract, then a 
bill for the admission of more slave states from Texas would never receive my 

To your fourth interrogatory I answer most decidedly in the affirmative, 
and for reasons set forth in my reported remarks at Ottawa last Monday. 

To your fifth interrogatory I also reply in the affirmative most cordially, 
and that I will use my utmost exertions to secure the nomination and election 
of a man who will accomplish the objects of said interrogatories. I most cor- 
dially approve of the resolutions adopted at the union meeting held at Princeton 
on the 27th September ult. Yours, etc., 


All I have to say in regard to Dr. Molony is, that he was the regu- 
larly nominated Democratic candidate for congress in his district was 
elected at that time, at the end of his term was appointed to a land- 
office at Danville. (I never heard anything of Judge Douglas's instru- 
mentality in this.) He held this office a considerable time, and when 


we were at Freeport the other day, there were handbills scattered about 
notifying the public that after our debate was over, R. S. Molony would 
make a Democratic speech in favor of Judge Douglas. That is all I 
know of my own personal knowledge. It is added here to this resolu- 
tion, and truly I believe, that 

"Among those who participated in the Joliet convention, and who 
supported its nominee, with his platform as laid down in the resolu- 
tion of the convention and in his reply as above given, we call at ran- 
dom the following names, all of which are recognized at this day as 
leading Democrats:" 

"Cook County E. B. Williams, Charles McDonell, Arno Voss, 
Thomas Hoyne, Isaac Cook." 

I reckon we ought to except Cook. 

"F. C. Sherman." 

"Will Joel A. Matteson, S. W. Bowen." 

"Kane B. F. Hall, G. W. Renwick, A. M. Herrington, Elijah Wil- 

"McHenry W. M. Jackson, Enos W. Smith, Neil Donnelly." 
"La Salle John Hise, William Reddick." 

William Reddick! another one of Judge Douglas's friends that stood 
on the stand with him at Ottawa, at the time the Judge says my knees 
trembled so that I had to be carried away. The names are all here: 

"DuPage Nathan Allen." 

"DeKalb Z. B. Mayo." . 

Here is another set of resolutions which I think are apposite to the 
matter in hand. 

On the twenty-eighth of February of the same year, a Democratic 
district convention was held at Naperville, to nominate a candidate for 
circuit judge. Among the delegates were Bowen and Kelly, of Will; 
Captain Naper, H. H. Cody, Nathan Allen, of DuPage; W. M. Jack- 
son, J. M. Strode, P. W. Platt and Enos W. Smith, of McHenry; J. 
Horsman and others, of Winnebago. Colonel Strode presided over the 
convention. The following resolutions were unanimously adopted 
the first on motion of P. W. Platt, the second on motion of William M. 
Jackson : 

Resolved, That this Convention is in favor of the Wilmot Proviso, both in 
principle and practice, and that we know of no good reason why any person 
should oppose the largest latitude in free soil, free territory and free speech, 

Resolved. That in the opinion of this convention, the time has arrived when 
all men should be free, whites as well as others. 

Judge Douglas" What is the date of those resolutions?" 
Mr. Lincoln I understand it was in 1850, but I do not know it. I 
do not state a thing and say I know it, when I do not. But I have the 
highest belief that this is so. I know of no way to arrive at the conclu- 
sion that there is an error in it. I mean to put a case no stronger than 
the truth will allow. But what I was going to comment upon is an 
extract from a newspaper in DeKalb county, and it strikes me as being 
rather singular, I confess, under the circumstances. There is a Judge 
Mayo in that county, who is a candidate for the legislature, for the 
purpose, if he secures his election, of helping to re-elect Judge Douglas. 
He is the editor of a newspaper [DeKalb County Sentinel], and in that 
paper I find the extract I am going to read. It is part of an editorial 
article in which he was electioneering as fiercely as he could for Judge 


Douglas and against me. It was a curious thing, I think, to be in such 
a paper. I will agree to that, and the Judge may make the most of it: 

"Our education has been such, that we have ever been rather in 
favor of the equality of the blacks; that is, that they should enjoy all 
the privileges of the whites where they reside. We are aware that this 
is not a very popular doctrine. We have had many a confab with some 
who are now strong ' Republicans, ' we taking the broad ground of equal- 
ity and they the opposite ground. 

"We were brought up in a state where blacks were voters, and we 
do not know of any inconvenience resulting from it, though perhaps it 
would not work as well where the blacks are more numerous. We have 
no doubt of the right of the whites to guard against such an evil, if it 
is one. Our opinion is that it would be best for all concerned to have 
the colored population in a state by themselves [in this I agree with 
him] ; but if within the jurisdiction of the United States, we say by all 
means they should have the right to have their senators and representa- 
tives in congress, and to vote for President. With us ' worth makes the 
man, and want of it the fellow.' We have seen many a 'nigger' that 
we thought more of than some white men." 

This is one of Judge Douglas's friends. Now I do not want to leave 
myself in an attitude where I can be misrepresented, so I will say I do 
not think the Judge is responsible for this article; but he is quite as 
responsible for it as I would be if one of my friends had said it. I 
think that is fair enough. 

I have here also a set of resolutions passed by a Democratic state 
convention in Judge Douglas's own good old state of Vermont, that I 
think ought to be good for him too : 

Resolved, That liberty is a right inherent and inalienable in man, and that 
herein all men are equal. 

Resolved. That we claim no authority in the Federal Government to abolish 
slavery in the several states, but we do claim for it constitutional power per- 
petually to prohibit the introduction of slavery into territory now free, and abolish 
it wherever, under the jurisdiction of congress, it exists. 

Resolved. That this power ought immediately to be exercised in prohibiting 
the introduction and existence of slavery in New Mexico and California, in 
abolishing slavery and the slave-trade in the District of Columbia, on the high 
seas, and wherever else, under the constitution, it can be reached. 

Resolved, That no more slave states should be admitted into the Federal 

Resolved, That the government ought to return to its ancient policy, not to 
extend, nationalize or encourage, but to limit, localize and discourage slavery. 

At Freeport I answered several interrogatories that had been pro- 
pounded to me by Judge Douglas at the Ottawa meeting. The Judge 
has yet not seen fit to find any fault with the position that I took in 
regard to those seven interrogatories, which were certainly broad 
enough, in all conscience, to cover the entire ground. In my answers, 
which have been printed, and all have had the opportunity of seeing, 
I take the ground that those who elect me must expect that I will do 
nothing which will not be in accordance with those answers. I have 
some right to assert that Judge Douglas has no fault to find with them. 
But he chooses to still try to thrust me upon different ground without 
paying any attention to my answers, the obtaining of which from me 
cost him so much trouble and concern. At the same time, I propounded 
four interrogatories to him, claiming it as a right that he should answer 


as many interrogatories for me as I did for him, and 1 would reserve 
myself for a future installment when I got them ready. The Judge in 
answering me upon that occasion, put in what I suppose he intends as 
answers to all four of my interrogatories. The first one of these inter- 
rogatories I have before me, and it is in these words: 

"Question 1. If the people of Kansas shall, by means entirely un- 
objectionable in all other respects, adopt a State Constitution, and ask 
admission into the Union under it, before they have the requisite num- 
ber of inhabitants according to the English bill some ninety-three 
thousand will you vote to admit them?" 

As I read the Judge's answer in the newspaper, and as I remember 
it as pronounced at the time, he does not give any answer which is 
equivalent to yes or no I will or I wont. He answers at very consid- 
erable length, rather quarreling with me for asking the question, and 
insisting that Judge Trumbull had done something that I ought to say 
something about; and finally getting out such statements as induce me 
to infer that he means to be understood he will, in that supposed case, 
vote for the admission of Kansas. I only bring this forward now for 
the purpose of saying that if he chooses to put a different construction 
upon his answer he may do it. But if he does not, I shall from this 
time forward assume that he will vote for the admission of Kansas in 
disregard of the English bill. He has the right to remove any mis- 
understanding I may have. I only mention it now that I may here- 
after assume this to be the true construction of his answer, if he does 
not now choose to correct me. 

The second interrogatory that I propounded to him, was this: 

"Question 2. Can the people of a United States territory, in any 
lawful way, against the wish of any citizen of the United States, ex- 
clude slavery from its limits prior to the formation of a State Consti- 

To this Judge Douglas answered that they can lawfully exclude 
slavery from the territory prior to the formation of a constitution. He- 
goes on to tell us how it can be done. As I understand him, he holds 
that it can be done by the territorial legislature refusing to make any 
enactments for the protection of slavery in the territory and especially 
by adopting unfriendly legislation to it. For the sake of clearness I 
state it again; that they can exclude slavery from the territory, first, by 
withholding what he assumes to be an indispensable assistance to it 
in the way of legislation; and, second, by unfriendly legislation. If 
I rightly understand him, I wish to ask your attention for a while to 
his position. 

In the first place, the supreme court of the United States has de- 
cided that any congressional prohibition of slavery in the territories 
is unconstitutional that they have reached this proposition as a con- 
clusion from their former position, that the constitution of the United 
States expressly recognizes property in slaves, and from that other con- 
stitutional provision, that no person shall be deprived of property with- 
out due process of law. Hence they reach the conclusion that as the 
constitution of the United States expressly recogni/es property in 
slaves, and prohibits any person from beine deprived of property with- 
out due process of law, to pass an act of congress by which a man 
who owned a slave on one side of a line would be deprived of him if 


he took him on the other side, is depriving him of that property with- 
out due process of law. That I understand to be the decision of the 
supreme court. I understand also that Judge Douglas adheres most 
firmly to that decision; and the difficulty is, how is it possible for any 
power to exclude slavery from the territory unless in violation of that 
decision? That is the difficulty. , 

In the senate of the United States, in 1850, Judge Trumbull, in a 
speech, substantially, if not directly, put the same interrogatory to 
Judge Douglas, as to whether the people of a territory had the lawful 
power to exclude slavery prior to the formation of a constitution? 
Judge Douglas then answered at considerable length and his answer 
will be found in the Congressional Globe, under date of June 9, 1856. 
The Judge said that whether the people could exclude slavery prior to 
the formation of a constitution or not was a question to be decided by 
the supreme court. He put that proposition, as will be seen by the 
Congressional Globe, in a variety of forms, all running to the same 
thing in substance that it was a question for the supreme court. I 
maintain that when he says, after the supreme court have decided the 
question, that the people may yet exclude slavery by any means what- 
ever, he does virtually say, that it is not a question for the supreme 
court. He shifts his ground. I appeal to you whether he did not say 
it was a question for the supreme court? Has not the supreme court 
decided that question? When he now says the people may exclude sla- 
very, does he not make it a question for the people? Does he not vir- 
tually shift his ground and say that it is not a question for the court, 
but for the people? This is a very simple proposition a very plain 
and naked one. It seems to me that there is no difficulty in deciding it. 
In a variety of ways he said that it was a question for the supreme 
court. He did not stop then to tell us that whatever the supreme court 
decides, the people can by withholding necessary "police regulations" 
keep slavery out. He did not make any such answer. I submit to you 
now, whether the new state of the case has not induced the Judge to 
sheer away from his original ground. Would not this be the impres- 
sion of every fair-minded man? 

I hold that the proposition that slavery cannot enter a new country 
without police regulations is historically false. It is not true at all. I 
hold that the history of this country shows that the institution of sla- 
very was originally planted upon this continent without these "police 
regulations" which the Judge now thinks necessary for the actual estab- 
lishment of it. Not only so, but is there not another fact how came 
this Dred Scott decision to be made? It was made upon the case of a 
negro being taken and actually held in slavery in Minnesota territory, 
claiming his freedom because the act of congress prohibited his being 
so held there. Will the Judge pretend that Dred Scott was not held 
there without police regulations? There is at least one matter of rec- 
ord as to his having been held in slavery in the territory, not only with- 
out police regulations, but in the teeth of congressional legislation sup- 
posed to be valid 'at the time. This shows that there is vieror enough in 
slavery to plant itself in a new country even against unfriendly legis- 
lation. It takes not only law but the enforcement of law to keep it out. 
That is the history of this country upon the subject. 

I wish to ask one other question. It being understood that the con- 


stitution of the United States guarantees property in slaves in the terri- 
tories, if there is any infringement of the right of that property, would 
not the United States courts, organized for the government of" the ter- 
ritory, apply such remedy as might be necessary in that case? It is a 
maxim held by the courts, that there is no wrong without its remedy; 
and the courts have a remedy for whatever is acknowledged and treated 
as a wrong. 

Again : I will ask you, my friends, if you were elected members of 
the legislature, what would be the first thing you would have to do 
before entering upon your duties? Swear to support the constitution 
of the United States. Suppose you believe, as Judge Douglas does, that 
the constitution of the United States guarantees to your neighbor the 
right to hold slaves in that territory that they are his property 
how can you clear your oaths unless you give him such legislation as is 
necessary to enable him to enjoy that property? What do you under- 
stand by supporting the constitution of a state, or of the United 
States? Is it not to give such constitutional helps to the rights estab- 
lished by that constitution as may be practically needed. Can you, if 
you swear to support the constitution, and believe that the constitution 
establishes a right, clear your oath, without giving it support? Do you 
support the constitution if, knowing or believing there is a right estab- 
lished under it which needs specific legislation, you withhold that leg- 
islation? Do you not violate and disregard your oath? I can conceive 
of nothing plainer in the world. There can be nothing in the words 
"support the constitution," if you may run counter to it by refusing 
support to any right established under the constitution. And what I 
say here will hold with still more force against the Judge's doctrine of 
"unfriendly legislation." How could you, having sworn to support 
the constitution, and believing it guaranteed the right to hold slaves in 
the territories, assist in legislation intended to defeat that right? That 
would be violating your own view of the constitution. Not only so, 
but if you were to do so, how long would it take the courts to hold your 
votes unconstitutional and void? Not a moment. 

Lastly I would ask is not congress itself, under obligation to give 
legislative support to any right that is established under the United 
States constitution? I repeat the question is not congress, itself, 
bound to give legislative support to any right that is established in the 
United States constitution? A member of congress swears to support 
the constitution of the United States, and if he sees a right established 
by that constitution which needs specific legislative protection, can he 
clear his oath without giving that protection? Let me ask you why 
many of us who are opposed to slavery upon principle, give our acqui- 
escence to a Fugitive Slave law? Why do we hold ourselves under 
obligations to pass such a law, and abide by it when it is passed? Be- 
cause the constitution makes provision that the owners of slaves shall 
have the right to reclaim them. It gives the right to reclaim slaves, 
and that right is, as Judge Douglas says, a barren right, unless there 
is legislation that will enforce it. 

The mere declaration, "No person held to service or labor in one 
state under the laws thereof, escaping into another, shall in conse- 
quence of any law or regulation therein be discharged from such service 
or labor, but shall be delivered up on claim of the party to whom such. 

Tol. I 1 


service or labor may be due," is powerless without specific legislation 
to enforce it. Now, on what ground would a member of congress who 
is opposed to slavery in the abstract, vote for a Fugitive law, as I would 
deem it my duty to do? Because there is a constitutional right which 
needs legislation to enforce it. And although it is distasteful to me, I 
have sworn to support the constitution, and having so sworn, I cannot 
conceive that I do support it if I withhold from that right any neces- 
sary legislation to make it practical. And if that is true in regard to a 
Fugitive Slave law, is the right to have fugitive slaves reclaimed any 
better fixed in the constitution than the right to hold slaves in the ter- 
ritories? For this decision is a just exposition of the constitution, as 
Judge Douglas thinks. Is the one right any better than the other? Is 
there any man who, while a member of congress, would give support to 
the one any more than the other? If I wished to refuse to give legis- 
lative support to slave property in the territories, if a member of con- 
gress, I could not do it, holding the view that the constitution establishes 
that right. If I did it at all, it would be because I deny that this de- 
cision properly construes the constitution. But if I acknowledge, with 
Judge Douglas, that this decision properly construes the constitution, 
I cannot conceive that I would be less than a perjured man if I should 
refuse in congress to give such protection to that property as in its 
nature it needed. 

At the end of what I have said here I propose to give the Judge my 
fifth interrogatory, which he may take and answer at his leisure. My 
fifth interrogatory is this : 

If the slaveholding citizens of a United States territory should need 
and demand congressional legislation for the protection of their slave 
property in such territory, would you, as a member of congress, vote 
for or against such legislation? 

Judge Douglas "Will you repeat that? I want to answer that 
question. ' ' 

Mr. Lincoln If the slaveholding citizens of a United States terri- 
tory should need and demand congressional legislation for the protec- 
tion of their slave property in such territory, would you, as a member 
of congress, vote for or against such legislation? 

I am aware that in some of the speeches Judge Douglas has made, 
he has spoken as if he did not know or think that the supreme court 
had decided that a territorial legislature cannot exclude slavery. Pre- 
cisely what the Judge would say upon the subject whether he would 
say definitely that he does not understand they have so decided, or 
whether he would say he does understand that the courts have so de- 
cided, I do not know ; but I know that in his speech at Springfield he 
spoke of it as a thing they had not decided yet ; and in his answer to 
me at Freeport, he spoke of it so far again, as I can comprehend it. as 
a thing that had not yet been decided. Now I hold that if the Judge 
does entertain that view, I think that he is not mistaken in so far as it 
can be said that the court has not decided anything save the mere 
question of jurisdiction. I know the legal arguments that can be made 
that after a court has decided that it cannot take jurisdiction in a 
case, it then has decided all that is before it, and that is the end of it. 
A plausible argument can be made in favor of that proposition, but I 
know that Judge Douglas has said in one of his speeches that the court 


went forward, like honest men as they were, and decided all the points 
in the case. If any points are really extra-judicially decided because 
not necessarily before them, then this one as to the power of the territo- 
rial legislature to exclude slavery is one of them, as also the one that 
the Missouri Compromise was null and void. They are both extra-judi- 
cial, or neither is, according as the court held that they had no juris- 
diction in the case between the parties, because of want of capacity of 
one party to maintain a suit in that court. I want, if I have sufficient 
time, to show that the court did pass its opinion, but that is the only 
thing actually done in the case. If they did not decide, they showed 
what they were ready to decide whenever the matter was before them. 
What is that opinion ? After having argued that congress had no power 
to pass a law excluding slavery from a United States territory, they 
then used language to this effect: That inasmuch as congress itself 
could not exercise such a power, it followed as a matter of course that 
it could not authorize a territorial government to exercise it, for the 
territorial legislature can do no more than congress could do. Thus it 
expressed its opinion emphatically against the power of a territorial 
legislature to exclude slavery, leaving us in just as little doubt on that 
point as upon any other point they really decided. 

Now, my fellow-citizens, I will detain you only a little while longer. 
My time is nearly out. I find a report of a speech made by Judge Doug- 
las at Joliet, since we last met at Freeport published, I believe, in 
the Missouri Republican on the 9th of this month in which Judge 
Douglas says: 

"You know at Ottawa, I read this platform, and asked him if he 
concurred in each and all of the principles set forth in it. He would 
not answer these questions. At last I said frankly, I wish you to an- 
swer them, because when I get them up here where the color of your 
principles are a little darker than in Egypt, I intend to trot you down 
to Jonesboro. The very notice that I was going to take him down to 
Egypt made him tremble in the knees so that he had to be carried from 
the platform. He laid up seven days, and in the meantime held a con- 
sultation with his political physicians; they had Lovejoy and Farns- 
worth and all the leaders of the Abolition party they consulted it all 
over, and at last Lincoln came to the conclusion that he would answer, 
so he came up to Freeport last Friday." 

Now that statement altogether furnishes a subject for philosophical 
contemplation. I have been treating it in that way, and I have really 
come to the conclusion that I can explain it in no other way than by 
believing the Judge is crazy. If he was in his right mind, I cannot 
conceive how he would have risked disgusting the four or five thousand 
of his own friends who stood there, and knew, as to my having been 
carried from the platform, that there was not a word of truth in it. 

Judge Douglas "Didn't they carry you off?" 

Mr. Lincoln There ; that question illustrates the character of this 
man Douglas, exactly. He smiles now and says, "Didn't they carry 
you off?" But he said then, "he had to be carried off;" and he said 
it to convince the country that he had so completely broken me down 
by his speech that I had to be carried away. Now he seeks to dodge it, 
and asks. "Didn't they carry you off?" Yes. they did. But, Judge 
Douglas, why didn't you tell the truth? I would like to know why 


you didn't tell the truth about it. And then again, "He laid up seven 
days." He puts this in print for the people of the country to read as a 
serious document. I think if he had been in his sober senses he would 
not have risked that barefacedness in the presence of thousands of his 
own friends, who knew that I made speeches within six of the seven 
days at Henry, Marshall county; Augusta, Hancock county, and Ma- 
comb, McDonough county, including all the necessary travel to meet 
him again at Freeport at the end of the six days. Now, I say, there is 
no charitable way to look at that statement, except to conclude that he 
is actually crazy. There is another thing in that statement that 
alarmed me very greatly as he states it, that he was going to "trot me 
down to Egypt." Thereby he would have you to infer that I would 
not come to Egypt unless he forced me that I could not be got here, 
unless he, giant-like, had hauled me down here. That statement he 
makes, too, in the teeth of the knowledge that I had made the stipulation 
to come down here, and that he himself had been very reluctant to 
enter into the stipulation. More than all this, Judge Douglas, when 
he made that statement, must have been crazy, and wholly out of his 
sober senses, or else he would have known that when he got me down 
here that promise that windy promise of his powers to annihilate 
me, wouldn't amount to anything. Now, how little do I look like being 
carried away trembling? Let the Judge go on, and after he is done 
with his half hour, I want you all, if I can 't go home myself, to let me 
stay and rot here ; and if anything happens to the Judge, if I cannot 
carry him to the hotel and put him to bed, let me stay here and rot. I 
say, then, there is something extraordinary in this statement. I ask you 
if you know any other living man who would make such a statement? 
I will ask my friend Casey, over there, if he would do such a thing? 
Would he send that out and have his men take it as the truth ? Did the 
Judge talk of trotting me down to Egypt to scare me to death ? Why, I 
know this people better than he does. I was raised just a little east of 
here. I am a part of this people. But the Judge was raised further 
north, and perhaps he has some horrid idea of what this people might 
be induced to do. But really I have talked about this matter perhaps 
longer than I ought, for it is no great thing, and yet the smallest are 
often the most difficult things to deal with. The Judge has set about 
seriously trying to make the impression that when we meet at different 
places I am literally in his clutches that I am a poor, helpless, de- 
crepit mouse, and that I can do nothing at all. This is one of the ways 
he has taken to create that impression. I don't know any other way 
to meet it, except this. I don't want to quarrel with him to call him 
a liar but when I come square up to him I don't know n'hat else to 
call him if I must tell the truth out. I want to be at peace, and reserve 
all my fighting powers for necessary occasions. My time, now, is very 
nearly out, and I give up the trifle that is left to the Judge, to let him 
set my knees trembling again, if he can. 


My friends, while I am very grateful to you for the enthusiasm 
which you show for me, I will say in all candor, that your quietness 
will tie much more agreeable than your applause, inasmuch as you de- 
prive me of some part of my time whenever you cheer. 


I will commence where Mr. Lincoln left off, and make a remark 
upon this serious complaint of his about my speech at Joliet. I did 
say there in a playful manner that when I put these questions to Mr. 
Lincoln at Ottawa he failed to answer and that he trembled and had 
to be carried off the stand, and required seven days to get up his reply. 
That he did not walk off from the stand he will not deny. That when 
the crowd went away from the stand with me, a few persons carried 
him home on their shoulders and laid him down, he will admit. I wish 
to say to you that whenever I degrade my friends and myself by allow- 
ing them to carry me on their backs along through the public streets, 
when I am able to walk, I a.m willing to be deemed crazy. I did not 
say whether I beat him or he beat me in the argument. It is true I 
put these questions to him, and I put them not as mere idle questions, 
but showed that I based them upon the creed of the Black Republican 
party as declared by their conventions in that portion of the state 
which he depends upon to elect him, and desired to know whether he 
indorsed that creed. He would not answer. When I reminded him 
that I intended bringing him into Egypt and renewing my questions if 
he refused to answer, he then consulted and did get up his answers 
one week after, answers which I may refer to in a few minutes and 
show you how equivocal they are. My object was to make him avow 
whether or not he stood by the platform of his party ; the resolutions 
I then read, and upon which I based my questions, had been adopted 
by his party in the Galena congressional district, and the Chicago and 
Bloomington congressional districts, composing a large majority of the 
counties in this state that give Republican or Abolition majorities. Mr. 
Lincoln cannot and will not deny that the doctrines laid down in these 
resolutions were in substance put forth in Lovejoy's resolutions, which 
were voted for by a majority of his party, some of them, if not all, 
receiving the support of every man of his party. Hence, I laid a 
foundation for my questions to him before I asked him whether that 
was or was not the platform of his party. He says that he answered 
my questions. One of them was whether he would vote to admit any 
more slave states into the Union. The creed of the Republican party 
as set forth in the resolutions of their various conventions was, that 
they would under no circumstances vote to admit another slave state. 
It was put forth in the Lovejoy resolutions in the legislature; it was 
put forth and passed in a majority of all the counties of this state 
which gave Abolition or Republican majorities, or elect members to the 
legislature of that school of politics. I had a right to know whether 
he would vote for or against the admission of another slave state in the 
event the people wanted it. He first answered that he was not pledged 
on the subject, and then said, "In regard to the other question, of 
whether I am pledged to the admission of any more slave states into 
the Union, I state to you very frankly that I would be exceedingly sorry 
ever to be put in the position of having to pass on that question. I 
should be exceedingly glad to know that there would never be another 
slave state admitted into the Union ; but I must add that if slavery shall 
be kept out of the territories during the territorial existence of any 
one given territory, and then the people, having a fair chance and clean 
field when they come to adopt a constitution, do such an extraordinary 
thing as adopt a slave constitution, uninfluenced by the actual presence 
of the institution among them, I see no alternative, if we own the 
country, but to admit them into the Union." 


Now analyze that answer. In the first place he says he would be 
exceedingly sorry to be put in a position where he would have to vote 
on the question of the admission of a slave state. Why is he a candi- 
date for the senate if he would be sorry to be put in that position? I 
trust the people of Illinois will not put him in a position which he 
would be so sorry to occupy. The next position he takes is that he 
would be glad to know that there would never be another slave state, 
yet, in certain contingencies, he might have to vote for one. What is 
that contingency ? "If congress keeps slavery out by law while it is a 
territory, and then the people should have a fair chance and should 
adopt slavery, uninfluenced by the presence of the institution," he 
supposed he would have to admit the state. Suppose congress should 
not keep slavery out during their territorial existence, then how would 
he vote when the people applied for admission into the Union with a 
slave constitution? That he does not answer, and that is the condition 
of every territory we have now got. Slavery is not kept out of Kansas 
by act of congress, and when I put the question to Mr. Lincoln, whether 
he will vote for the admission with or without slavery, as her people 
may desire, he will not answer, and you have not got an answer from 
him. In Nebraska slavery is not prohibited by act of congress, but the 
people are allowed, under the Nebraska bill, to do as they please on the 
subject; and when I ask him whether he will vote to admit Nebraska 
with a slave constitution if her people desire it, he will not answer. 
So with New Mexico, Washington territory, Arizona, and the four new 
states to be admitted from Texas. You cannot get an answer from him 
to these questions. His answer only applies to a given case, to a con- 
dition things which he knows do not exist in any one territory in 
the Union. He tries to give you to understand that he would allow the 
people to do as they please, and yet he dodges the question as to every 
territory in the Union. I now ask why cannot Mr. Lincoln answer to 
each of these territories? He has not done it, and he will not do it. 
The Abolitionists up north understand that this answer is made with 
a view of not committing himself on any one territory now in existence. 
It is so understood there, and you cannot expect an answer from him 
on a case that applies to any one territory, or applies to the new states 
which by compact we are pledged to admit out of Texas, when they 
have the requisite population and desire admission. I submit to you 
whether he has made a frank answer, so that you can tell how he would 
vote in any one of these cases. "He would be sorry to be put in the 
position." Why would he be sorry to be put in this position if his duty 
required him to give the vote? If the people of a territory ought to be 
permitted to come into the Union as a state, with slavery or without 
it, as they pleased, why not give the vote admitting them cheerfully? 
If in his opinion they ought not to come in with slavery, even if they 
wanted to, why not say that he would cheerfully vote against their 
admission? His intimation is that conscience would not let him vote 
"No," and he would be sorry to do that which his conscience would 
compel him to do as an honest man. 

In regard to the contract or bargain between Trumbull, the Aboli- 
tionists and him, which he denies, I wish to say that the charge can be 
proved by notorious historical facts. Trumbull, Lovejoy, Giddings, Fred 
Douglass, Hale, and Banks, were traveling the state at that time mak- 
ing speeches on the same side and in the same cause with him. He 


contents himself with the simple denial that no such thing occurred. 
Does he deny that he, and Trumbull, and Breese, and Giddings, and 
Chase, and Fred Douglass, and Lovejoy, and all those Abolitionists and 
deserters from the Democratic party, did make speeches all over this 
state in the same common cause? Does he deny that Jim Matheny 
was then, and is now, his confidential friend, and does he deny that 
Matheny made the charge of the bargain and fraud in his own language, 
as I have read it from his printed speech. Matheny spoke of his own 
personal knowledge of that bargain existing between Lincoln, Trumbull, 
and the Abolitionists. He still remains Lincoln's confidential friend, 
and is now a candidate for congress, and is canvassing the Springfield 
district for Lincoln. I assert that I can prove the charge to be true in 
detail if I can ever get it where I can summon and compel the attendance 
of witnesses. I have the statement of another man to the same effect 
as that made by Matheny, which I am not permitted to use yet, but Jim 
Matheny is a good witness on that point, and the history of the country 
is conclusive upon it. That Lincoln up to that time had been a Whig, 
and then undertook to abolitionize the Whigs and bring them into the 
Abolition camp, is beyond denial ; that Trumbull up to that time had 
been a Democrat, and deserted, and undertook to abolitionize the 
Democracy, and take them into the Abolition camp, is beyond denial; 
that they are both now active, leading, distinguished members of this 
Abolition Republican party, in full communion, is a fact that cannot 
be questioned or denied. 

But Lincoln is not willing to be responsible for the creed of his 
party. He complains because I hold him responsible, and in order 
to avoid the issue, he attempts to show that individuals in the Dem- 
ocratic party, many years ago, expressed Abolition sentiments. It is 
true that Tom Campbell, when a candidate for congress in 1850, 
published the letter which Lincoln read. When I asked Lincoln for 
the date of that letter he could not give it. The date of the letter has 
been suppressed by other speakers who have used it, though I take 
it for granted that Lincoln did not know the date. If he will take 
the trouble to examine, he will find that the letter was published 
only two days before the election, and was never seen until after it, 
except in one county. Tom Campbell would have been beat to death 
by the Democratic party if that letter had been made public in his 
district. As to Molony, it is true he uttered sentiments of the kind 
referred to by Mr. Lincoln, and the best Democrats would not vote 
for him for that reason. I returned from Washington after the pas- 
sage of the compromise measures in 1850, and when I found Mo- 
lony running under John Wentworth's tutelage, and on his platform, 
I denounced him, and declared that he was no Democrat. In my 
speech at Chicago, just before the election that year, I went before 
the infuriated people of that city and vindicated the compromise 
measures of 1850. Remember the city council had passed resolutions 
nullifying acts of congress and instructing the police to withold their as- 
sistance from the execution of the laws, and as I was the only man in the 
city of Chicago who was responsible for the passage of the compromise 
measures, I went before the crowd, justified each and every one of 
those measures, and let it be said to the eternal honor of the people 
of Chicago, that when they were convinced by my exposition of 
those measures that they were right and they had done wrong in 


opposing them, they repealed their nullifying resolutions and de- 
clared that they would acquiesce in and support the laws of the land. 
These facts are well known, and Mr. Lincoln can only get up indi- 
vidual instances, dating back to 1849- '50, which are contradicted 
by the whole tenor of the Democratic creed. 

But Mr. Lincoln does not want to be held responsible for the 
Black Republican doctrine of no more slave states. Farnsworth is 
the candidate of his party to-day in the Chicago district, and he made 
a speech in the last congress in which he called upon God to palsy 
his right arm if he ever voted for the admission of another slave 
state, whether the people wanted it or not. Lovejoy is making 
speeches all over the state for Lincoln now, and taking ground 
against any more slave states. Washburne, the Black Republican 
candidate for congress in the Galena district, is making speeches in 
favor of this same Abolition platform declaring no more slave states. 
Why are men running for congress in the northern districts, and 
taking that Abolition platform for their guide, when Mr. Lincoln 
does not want to be held to it down here in Egypt and in the center 
of the state, and objects to it so as to get votes here. Let me tell 
Mr. Lincoln that his party in the northern part of the state hold to 
that Abolition platform, and that if they do not in the south and in 
the center they present the extraordinary spectacle of a "house di- 
vided against itself," and hence "cannot stand." I now bring down 
upon him the vengeance of his own scriptural quotation, and give 
it a more appropriate application than he did, when I say to him 
that his party, Abolition in one end of the state and opposed to it in 
the other, is a house divided against itself, and cannot stand, and 
ought not to stand, for it attempts to cheat the American people out 
of their votes by disguising its sentiments. 

Mr. Lincoln attempts to cover up and get over his Abolitionism 
by telling you that he was raised a little east of you, beyond the 
Wabash in Indiana, and he thinks that makes a mighty sound and 
good man of him on all these questions. I do not know that the 
place where a man is born or raised has much to do with his political 
principles. The worst Abolitionist I have ever known in Illinois have 
been men who have sold their slaves in Alabama and Kentucky, and 
have come here and turned Abolitionists whilst spending the money 
got for the negroes they sold, and I do not know that an Abolition- 
ist from Indiana or Kentucky ought to have any more credit because 
he was born and raised among slaveholders. I do not know that a 
native of Kentucky is more excusable because raised among slaves, 
his father and mother having owned slaves, he comes to Illinois, turns 
Abolitionist, and slanders the graves of his father and mother, and 
breathes curses upon the institutions under which he was born, and 
his father and mother bred. True, I was not born out west here. I 
was born away down in Yankee land, I was born in a valley in Ver- 
mont, with the high mountains around me. I love the old green 
mountains and valleys of Vermont, where I was born, and where I 
played in my childhood. I went up to visit them some seven or eight 
years ago, for the first time for twenty odd years. When I got there 
they treated me very kindly. They invited me to the commence- 
ment of their college, placed me on the seats with their distinguished 
guests, and conferred upon me the degree of LL. D. in Latin (doctor 


of laws), the same as they did old Hickory, at Cambridge, many 
years ago, and I give you my word and honor I understood just as 
much of the Latin as he did. When they got through conferring 
the honorary degree, they called upon me for a speech, and I got up 
with my heart full and swelling with gratitude for their kindness, 
and I said to them, "My friends, Vermont is the most glorious spot 
on the face of this globe for a man to be born in, provided he emi- 
grates when he is very young." 

I emigrated when I was very young. I came out here when I 
was a boy, and I found my mind liberalized, and my opinions en- 
larged when I got on these broad prairies, with only the heavens to 
bound my vision, instead of having them circumscribed by the little 
narrow ridges that surrounded the valley where I was born. But, 
I discard all flings of the land where a man was born. I wish to be 
judged by my principles, by those great public measures and con- 
stitutional principles upon which the peace, the happiness and the 
perpetuity of this republic now rest. 

Mr. Lincoln has framed another question, propounded it to me^ 
and desired my answer. As I have said before, I did not put a 
question to him that I did not first lay a foundation for by showing 
that it was a part of the platform of the party whose votes he is now 
seeking, adopted in a majority of the counties where he now hopes 
to get a majority, and supported by the candidates of his party now 
running in those counties. But I will answer his question. It is as 
follows: "If the slaveholding citizen of a United States territory 
should need and demand congressional legislation for the protection 
of their slave property in such territory, would you, as a member of 
congress, vote for or against such legislation?" I answer him that it 
is a fundamental article in the Democratic creed that there should be 
non-interference and non-intervention by congress with slavery in the 
states or territories. Mr. Lincoln could have found an answer to his 
question in the Cincinnati platform, if he had desired it. The Demo- 
cratic party have always stood by that great principle of non-interfer- 
ence and non-intervention by congress with slavery in the states ana 
territories alike, and I stand on that platform now. 

Now I desire to call your attention to the fact that Lincoln did not 
define his own position in his own question. How does he stand on that 
question? He put the question to me at Freeport whether or not I 
would vote to admit Kansas into the Union before she had 93,420 in- 
habitants. I answered him at once that it having been decided that 
Kansas had now population enough for a slave state, she had popula- 
tion enough for a free state. 

I answered the question unequivocally, and then I asked him whether 
he would vote for or against the admission of Kansas before she had 
93.420 inhabitants, and he would not answer me. To-day he has called 
attention to the fact that, in his opinion, my answer on that question 
was not quite plain enough, and yet he has not answered it himself. He 
now puts a question in relation to congressional interference in the ter- 
ritories to me. I answer him direct, and yet he has not answered the 
question himself. I ask you whether a man has any right, in common 
decency, to put questions in these public discussions, to his opponent, 
which he will not answer himself, when they are pressed home to him. 
I have asked him three times, whether he would vote to admit Kansas 


whenever the people applied with a constitution of their own making 
and their own adoption, under circumstances that were fair, just and 
unexceptional, but I cannot get an answer from him. Nor will he an- 
swer the question which he put to me, and which I have just answered 
in relation to congressional interference in the territories, by making 
a slave code there. 

It is true that he goes on to answer the question by arguing that 
under the decision of the supreme court it is the duty of a man to vote 
for a slave code in the territories. He says that it is his duty, under 
the decision that the court has made, and if he believes in that deci- 
sion he would be a perjured man if he did not give the vote. I want to 
know whether he is not bound to a decision which is contrary to his 
opinions just as much as to one in accordance with his opinions. If the 
decision of the supreme court, the tribunal created by the constitu- 
tion to decide the question, is final and binding, is he not bound by it 
just as strongly as if he was for it instead of against it originally? 
Is every man in this land allowed to resist decisions he does not like, 
and only support those that meet his approval? What are important 
courts worth unless their decisions are binding on all good citizens? 
It is the fundamental principles of the judiciary that its decisions are 
final. It is created for that purpose, so that when you cannot agree 
among yourselves on a disputed point you appeal to the judicial tri- 
bunal which steps in and decides for you, and that decision is then 
binding on every good citizen. It is the law of the land just as much 
with Mr. Lincoln against it as for it. And yet he says that if that de- 
cision is binding he is a perjured man if he does not vote for a slave 
code in the different territories of this union. Well, if you [turning to 
Mr. Lincoln] are not going to resist the decision, if you obey it, and 
do not intend to array mob law against the constituted authorities, 
then, according to your own statement, you will be a perjured man if 
you do not vote to establish slavery in these territories. My doctrine 
is, that even taking Mr. Lincoln's view that the decision recognizes 
the right of a man to carry his slaves into the territories of the United 
States, if he pleases, yet after he gets there he needs affirmative law to 
make that right of any value. The same doctrine not only applies to 
slave property, but all other kinds of property. Chief Justice Taney 
places it upon the ground that slave property is on an equal footing 
with other property. Suppose one of your merchants should move to 
Kansas and open a liquor store ; he has a right to take groceries and 
liquors there, but the mode of selling them, and the circumstances 
under which they shall be sold, and all the remedies must be prescribed 
by local legislation, and if that is unfriendly it will drive him out just 
as effectually as if there was a constitutional provision against the sale 
of liquor. So the absence of local legislation to encourage and sup- 
port slave property in a territory excludes it practically just as effect- 
ually as if there was a positive constitutional provision against it. Hence, 
I assert that under the Dred Scott decision you cannot maintain slavery 
a day in a territory where there is an unwilling people and unfriendly 
legislation. If the people are opposed to it, our right is a barren, 
worthless, useless right, and if they are for it, they will support and 
encourage it. We come right back, therefore, to the practical ques- 
tion, if the people of a territory want slavery they will have it, and if 
they do not want it you cannot force it on them. And this is the prac- 


tical question, the great principle, upon which our institutions rest. 1 
am willing to take the decision of the supreme court as it was pro- 
nounced by that august tribunal without stopping to inquire whether 
I would have decided that way or not. I have had many a decision 
made against me on questions of law which I did not like, but I was 
bound by them just as much as if I had had a hand in making them, 
and approved them. Did you ever see a lawyer or a client lose his case 
that he approved the decision of the court? They always think the 
decision unjust when it is given against them. In a government of laws 
like ours we must sustain the constitution as our fathers made it, and 
maintain the rights of the state as they are guaranteed under the con- 
stitution, and then we will have peace and harmony between the differ- 
ent states and sections of this glorious Union. 



When the joint debate was over in Jonesboro, the two contestants 
began their journey to the next meeting which was at Charleston, Coles 
county, September 18. Mr. Lincoln seems to have gone direct to Cen- 
tralia. Just north of Centralia was the new town of Central City. 
Here the state fair was in progress. Mr. Douglas was not in haste to 
reach Centralia. At least he visited Benton, the home of John A. Logan, 
where he received an ovation. A letter from Judge Thomas Layman of 
Benton tells an interesting story and it is reproduced. 


"BENTON, Illinois, May 1, 1912. 

"Prof. George W. Smith, Carbondale, Illinois Dear Sir : I am in receipt of 
your letter of April 24th asking for some data relative to the visit of Stephen A. 
Douglas to Benton on September 16, 1858. The Benton Standard was burned 
three years ago and all the files of the paper since 1849 were destroyed. So I will 
not be able to give you much information. 

"On the morning of September 16, 1858, Tillman B. Cantrell, Daniel Mooney- 
ham and other prominent citizens met Douglas at Tamaroa. At that time 110 
railroad entered Benton. Douglas arrived in Benton sometime before noon, and 
was at once taken to the home of John A. Logan on South street The old house 
where he was entertained is still standing. He spoke in a grove in the northwest 
part of town. The afternoon of the fifteenth, Mrs. John A. Logan went over town 
and collected money to buy materials with which to make a flag. She and a 
party of women spent nearly all the night making the flag which was used in 
the procession and on the speaker's stand next day. After Douglas had finished 
his speech he was driven back to Tamaroa and took the north-bound Illinois 
Central. I am told that John A. Logan presided as chairman at the meeting. 
Mrs. Douglas did not accompany him. 

"Mrs. Tabitha Browning of this place has given me most of the information 
that I have obtained. I have been unable to find anyone thus far who attended 
the Jonesboro debate from Benton. Mr. W. S. Cantrell says that Judge M. C. 
Crawford of Jonesboro can probably tell you of the Benton visit of Douglas. 
If I find anything further I will let you know. With best wishes, I remain, 

"Very sincerely, 

"Tnos. J. LAYMAN." 


From The Missouri Republican Sept 18, 1858: "The National 
Democrats held an anti-Douglas meeting here last evening, August 16, 
in front of the Veranda Hotel, to express their opposition to Judge 



Douglas, and the principles which he advocates. The meeting was but 
poorly attended and several times interrupted by cries for Douglas. 
The first speaker, Governor Reynolds (candidate for state superin- 
tendent of public instruction), addressed the crowd, and took occasion 
in the course of his remarks to say that he would not countenance St. 
Paul though he had sacred gospels on his lips, if he favored Douglas. 
He was followed by Colonel Carpenter and Mr. Hoyne of Chicago, and 

' ' As evidence of the nature of the meeting and the amount of interest 
manifested, I will say I saw the principal speaker, assisted by one of the 
editors of the Chicago Press and Tribune, engaged in carrying dry 
goods boxes to make a platform from which to speak! 

' ' The Douglas Democrats soon got up an opposition meeting within a 
short distance and drew the major portion of the crowd away from the 
former place. The Douglas meeting was addressed by Messrs. Linder, 
Fouke, and Hicks, and a great deal of enthusiasm was manifested 
throughout. ' ' 

On the next afternoon, September 17, Senator Douglas spoke to the 
assembled citizens in Centralia in answer to Governor Reynolds and the 
other administration speakers. 

Both Lincoln and Douglas spent their spare time at the State Fair, 
and on the evening of the 17th they proceeded to Mattoon where both re- 
mained over night. On the morning of the 18th they proceeded by wagon 
road to Charleston, eight miles to the east. Great processions were formed 
and the intense heat and great clouds of dust made the journey very try- 
ing. The two processions were met out of Charleston with banners, bands, 
and great crowds. The debate occurred in the fair grounds, and the 
crowd was estimated at from ten to fifteen thousand. 


The last of the joint debates was held at Alton October 15. The 
speaking occurred at the east side of the present city hall. There were 
joint committees on decorations, music, salutes, and other matters of 
common interests. Boats and trains brought in people from all direc- 
tions. The audience was estimated at from five to six thousand. The dis- 
patches refer to Mr. Douglas' voice as much impaired. Mr. Lincoln 
seems to have stood the strain of the campaign some better than Douglas. 
Following the Alton debate Mr. Lincoln filled twelve regular engagements 
while Mr. Douglas filled nine. 


The election occurred Tuesday, November 2, 1858. "When the smoke 
of battle cleared away it was found that the result was : Douglas Senate, 
14 ; house, 40 ; total, 54. 

Lincoln Senate, 11; house, 35; total, 46. 

The state had gone Republican on the two state positions the treas- 
urership and the superintendent of public instruction. And probably if 
the apportionment of the senatorial and representative districts had been 
fairly made Lincoln would have been the senator. 

The contest between Douglas and Lincoln had attracted the atten- 
tion of the entire country, north and south, east and west. Mr. Lincoln 




IN 1858 


was defeated but not cast down. It was only one short year till the na- 
tional canvass would demand attention of the whole people. Lincoln 
wrote to a friend shortly after the November election as follows: "The 
fight must go on. The cause of civil liberty must not be surrendered 
at the end of one or one hundred defeats. Douglas had the ingenuity 
to be supported in the late contest, both as the best means to break 
down and to uphold the slave interest. No ingenuity can keep these 
antagonistic elements in harmony long. Another explosion will soon 

Douglas naturally felt proud of his victory. After a short rest 
following the close of the campaign, he made a tour of the southern 
states ; but nothing he could say or do could pacify the administration. 
Its friends were up in arms against what was called the "Freeport 
Doctrine." Douglas must feel the hand of the administration, and so 
he was deposed from the chairmanship of the committee on territories 
which he had held for eleven years. 

In the Freeport debate Mr. Lincoln ingenuously propounded this 
question to Mr. Douglas: 

"Can the people of a United States territory in any lawful way, 
against the wish of any citizens of the United States, exclude slavery 
from its limits prior to the formation of a state constitution ? ' ' 

If Mr. Douglas wishes still to uphold the doctrine of Squatter 
Sovereignty he will be forced to say, "Yes." If he says, "No," then 
his doctrine of Squatter Sovereignty has burst as a bubble. If Doug- 
las answers in the affirmative he runs counter to the decision of the su- 
preme court which has so greatly delighted the slave holders of the 
south. If he says, "Yes," every pro-slavery southerner will be ready 
to read him out of the Democratic party. If he says, "No," he will 
lose the senatorship, for those that are pleading Douglas' cause argue 
that Douglas ought to be sustained because he stands for abiding by 
the will of the people as expressed in regularly constituted means for 
such expression. He had won many admirers, not only in Illinois but 
throughout the north, for refusing to endorse the action of the Le- 
compton convention which shamefully disfranchised nearly 10,000 citi- 
zens of Kansas. In this stand he had lost the good will of Buchanan 
and as to the general feeling toward him in the south we shall see 

Douglas was truly midway between two great dangers, but sum- 
moning all his native skill in the art of debate he answered : " I answer 
emphatically, as Mr. Lincoln has heard me answer a hundred times 
from every stump in Illinois, that, in my opinion the people of the 
territory can by lawful means, exclude slavery from their limits prior 
to the formation of a state constitution. . . . The people have the 
lawful means to introduce it or exclude it, as they please, for the rea- 
son that slavery cannot exist a day, or an hour, anywhere, unless it is 
supported by local police regulation." 

This greatly angered the south ; and the press and the public speak- 
ers in that section denounced him in the severest terms. To get at 
something of the feelings of the people in the south toward Douglas for 
his answer to question number two, let us hear Senator Judah P. Ben- 
jamin, of Louisiana, in the United States senate, May 28, 1860: "Up 
to the years of 1857 and 1858, no man in this nation had a higher or 
more exalted opinion of the character, the services and the political 


integrity of the senator from Illinois (Douglas) than I had . . . 
Sir ... I have been obliged to pluck down my idol from his place 
on high, and to refuse him any more support or confidence as a mem- 
ber of the party. . . . The causes that have operated on me have 
operated on the Democratic party of the United States, and have ope- 
rated an effect which the whole future life of the senator will be utterly 
unable to obliterate. It is impossible that confidence lost can be re- 
stored. . . . We accuse him for this, to-wit: That having bar- 
gained with us upon a point upon which we were an issue, that it 
should be a judicial point; that he would abide the decision; that he 
would act under the decision, and consider it a doctrine of the party; 
that having said that to us here in the senate, he went home, and under 
the stress of a local election, his knees gave way; his whole person 
trembled. His adversary stood upon principle and was beaten; and lo! 
he is the candidate of a mighty party for the presidency of the United 
States. The senator from Illinois faltered. He got the prize for which 
he faltered ; but lo ! the grand prize of his ambition today slips from 
his grasp because of his faltering in his former contest, and his suc- 
cess in the canvas for the senate, purchased for an ignoble price, has 
cost him the loss of the presidency of the United States. ' ' 

This speech is no doubt a fair statement of the feeling of the south 
toward Douglas for his failure to stand up boldly for the decision of 
the supreme court. 


The year 1860 was one which will long be remembered by those 
who were old enough to be aware of the significance of the events of 
that memorable year. It can be truly said that since the success of the 
Republican party in 1856, that politics was the absorbing thing in the 
state. Everyone looked forward to the presidential contest which was 
to take place in the summer and fall of 1860. In the west there was 
little doubt that Lincoln was the logical candidate of the Republican 
party. However, there were other men worthy of such honor. Salmon 
P. Chase, of Ohio, William A. Seward, of New York, and Simon Cam- 
eron, of Pennsylvania, were also considered presidential possibilities. 

The great battle fought between Lincoln and Douglas had drawn 
all eyes toward Illinois and Abraham Lincoln. A Chicago editor wrote 
to Lincoln while the campaign was in progress in 1858, and said : ' ' You 
are like Byron, who woke up one morning and found himself famous. 
People wish to know about you. You have sprung at once from the 
position of a capital fellow and a leading lawyer in Illinois, to a na- 
tional reputation. ' ' David Davis, one of the great men in Illinois, wrote 
Lincoln in 1858, just after the final result became known and said: 
"You have made a noble canvass which, if unavaling in this state, has 
earned you a national reputation, and made you friends everywhere." 

The Republican central committee of New Hampshire sent word 
to Lincoln that if Douglas came into that state, to make a campaign, 
they would want Mr. Lincoln's services. Scores of calls came from 
all parts of the country for Mr. Lincoln's help in the political cam- 
paign of 1859. Mr. Lincoln's most serious political work in 1859, 
was in the campaign in Ohio. The Democratic party had invited 
Douglas into that state, and as soon as this was known the Republican 


committee urged Mr. Lincoln to come to Ohio. This Mr. Lincoln did. 
He made two set speeches; one at Columbus and one at Cincinnati. 
The burden of his speeches was the subject of slavery. He met with 
enthusiastic friends everywhere. The committee thought so much of 
his influence in carrying Ohio that they arranged to print in cheap 
book form his debate with Douglas, together with the two speeches in 
Ohio, as campaign documents for the presidential canvass in 1860. 

In the winter of 1859-60, Mr. Lincoln was invited to New York and 
Boston to make public addresses. He also visited many other points 
in the New England and the Middle States. These addresses were 
somewhat of the nature of lectures. Mr. Lincoln received pay, at least 
in New York and Boston, at the rate of $200 per night. In New York 
he spoke in Cooper Institute to one of the finest audiences which ever 
assembled in the city. William Cullen Bryant was chairman of the 
evening. The next morning The Tribune said : ' ' Since the days of Clay 
and Webster no man has spoken to a larger assemblage of the intellect 
and mental culture in our city." This trip to the east was of great 
value to Mr. Lincoln when the coming canvass was under way. 

All through the year of 1859 there was a quiet, though effective, 
work going on in Illinois looking toward the securing of the Republi- 
can nomination for the presidency for Mr. Lincoln. Among those who 
were thus pushing the claims of Lincoln were David Davis, Leonard 
Swett, Judge Stephen T. Logan, John M. Palmer, Jesse W. Fell, John 
Wentworth, Joseph Medill, Norman B. Judd, Richard Oglesby and 
scores of others. County conventions, which were being held in the 
early spring of 1860, instructed their delegates to the state convention 
to work for the nomination of Lincoln. In the winter of '59 and '60, 
Joseph Medill, editor of the Chicago Tribune was in Washington, try- 
ing quietly to work up a Lincoln sentiment, and on February 16, 1860, 
The Tribune came out editorially for Lincoln. 

But in a list of twenty-one persons mentioned for the presidency 
published in New York in the winter of '59 and '60, Lincoln's name 
does not appear. There was scarcely a paper in the east that ever 
mentioned his name as a probable candidate. 

The state Republican convention met in Decatur May 9 and 10. 
Here Lincoln received an ovation. John M. Palmer moved that, 
"Abraham Lincoln is the choice of the Republican party of Illinois 
for the presidency, and the delegates from this state are instructed to 
use all honorable means to secure his nomination by the Chicago con- 
vention, and to vote as a unit for him." At this convention Richard 
Yates was nominated for governor and a full ticket put into the field. 

We have already spoken of Douglas' trip through the southern 
states following the campaign of 1858. He spoke in all the large cities 
in the south. He was received with marked courtesy and listened to 
with growing interest. In early January, 1859, Douglas arrived at the 
capitol and took his seat in the senate. He was soon made aware of the 
fact that the southern senators had deposed him from the leadership 
of his party or at least the southern half of it. They demanded of him 
what he would do if according to his "Freeport Doctrine" the terri- 
torial legislature should legislate so unfriendly as to exclude slavery. 
They pressed him so closely and made such demands that he said to 
them: "I tell you, gentlemen of the south, in all candor, I do not be- 
lieve a Democratic candidate can carry any one Democratic state of 


the north on the platform that it is the duty of the federal government 
to force the people of a territory to have slavery when they do not 
want it." 

Here, in the closing days of the session an irreparable schism was 
opened between the slaveholding Democracy of the south and the Squat- 
ter Sovereignty Democracy of the north. In June, 1859, Douglas, in an- 
swer to a question as to whether he would be a candidate for the presi- 
dency replied that if the Democracy adhere to its former principles his 
friends would be at liberty to present his name. On the contrary he 
said, if the convention shall insist on the revival of the slave-trade, or 
hold that congress has a right to pass a slave code for the territories, or 
that the constitution of the United States either establishes or prohibits 
slavery in the territories beyond the power of the people legally to con- 
trol it, then he could not accept the nomination if tendered to him. 

The National Republican convention met in a wigwam in Chicago. 
May 16, 1860. Strong delegations were present from the eastern states 
to whom the western methods of campaigning may have been a little 
new. A committee of one from each state and territory, was appointed 
on the committee on resolution which reported a very conservative set 
of resolutions as the platform of the party. The following is an abridg- 
ment of that document: 

The past four years have justified the organization of the Republican 
party. The causes which called it into existence are permanent. 

The principal of equality, stated in the Declaration of Independence, 
is essential to the preservation of our Republican institutions. 

The wonderful development of the nation is the result of the union of 
the states. 

The lawless invasion of any state or territory by armed force is 
among the gravest of crimes. 

The dogma that the constitution carries slavery into the Territories 
is a dangerous political heresy. 

We deny the right of congress, or of any territorial legislature, or of 
any individuals, to legalize slavery in any territory of the United States. 

The recent re-opening of the African slave trade is a crime against 

Kansas should of right be admitted as a state under the constitution 
recently formed. 

The party favors a protective tariff. 

The party favors liberal homestead laws. 

Pledges efficient protection to all classes of citizens. 

All citizens who can unite on this platform of principles are invited 
to give it their support. 

On the first ballot Seward had 132y 2 , Lincoln 102, Cameron 50y 2 , 
Bates 48, Chase 49, scattering 42. Lincoln's friends felt greatly en- 
couraged. The second ballot, resulted, Seward 184y 2 , Lincoln 181, Bates 
35, Chase 42i/>, scattering 22. On the third ballot Seward stood 183, 
Lincoln 23iy 2 ,~Bates 22, Chase 24y 2 , scattering 7. The total number of 
delegates was 466, a majority of which would be 234. Lincoln lacked 
only 2y 2 votes of the nomination. The Ohio delegates changed four 
votes to Lincoln from Chase, and Lincoln was nominated. With him was 
nominated Hannibal Hamlin, of Maine, for vice president. Mr. Lincoln 
was notified of his nomination immediately, and the greatest problem 


he had ever faced was now before him that of harmonizing all of the 
forces which were eventually to bring about his election. 

The National Democratic convention met at Charleston, South Caro- 
lina, April 23, 1860. It was known long before that day that there 
would be a wide difference of opinion on the subject of slavery in the 
convention. Upon the completion of the permanent organization, the 
committee on resolutions was named. On the 27th, Mr. Avery, of North 
Carolina, from the majority of the committee on platform reported (in 
part) as follows: 

Resolved, That the National Democracy of the United States hold 
these cardinal principles on the subject of slavery in the territories; 
1st, That congress has no power to abolish slavery in the territories; 
2d. That the. territorial legislature has no power to abolish slavery in 
the territory, nor to prohibit the introduction of slaves therein, nor any 
power to destroy or impair the right of property in slaves by any legis- 
lation whatever. 

This was a part of the majority report. Mr. Henry B. Payne, of 
Ohio, presented the minority report which affirmed the platform of 1856, 
but added: "Resolved, (2) That the Democratic party will abide by the 
decision of the supreme court of the United States on the question of 
constitutional law. ' ' 

Mr. Avery, in commenting upon the situation, said : " I say that the 
results and ultimate consequences to the southern states of this confed- 
eracy, if the Popular Sovereignty doctrine be adopted as the doctrine 
of the Democratic party, would be as dangerous and subversive of their 
rights as the adoption of the principle of congressional intervention or 
provision." In this Mr. Avery meant to say that the Republican doc- 
trine would be as acceptable to the south as the Squatter Sovereignty 

A vote was taken on the platform as reported by Mr. Avery and the 
one reported by Mr. Payne, both of which had been somewhat modified. 

Mr. Payne's report was adopted by a vote of 165 to 138. There- 
upon Alabama gave notice of her intention to withdraw from the con- 
vention. Other states followed. The seceding members held a meeting 
and adjourned to Richmond. The Douglas contingent balloted several 
times for President, but not making a choice adjourned to Baltimore. 
Here in June. Douglas was nominated for the presidency. 

The canvass was encouraging to Lincoln's friends from the start. 
The opposition was divided ; the Republicans were enthusiastic from the 
beginning. The twenty-four states which took part in the Chicago con- 
vention had 234 electoral votes out of the total of 303. Fremont, in 
1856, had carried 114 electoral votes and to these the Republicans, in 
their estimate, added the votes of New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Indiana, 
and Illinois, making 169. a wide margin over the needed majority of 152. 

A very dramatic feature of the campaign was the use of many things 
illustrative of Lincoln's life. Rails, mauls, axes, and log cabins were 
siams of his boyhood davs. 'Tis true the east was greatly disappointed 
when Lincoln received the nomination. They said he was without school- 
ing, was uncultured, and would be a "nullity" if elected. But while 
all manner of uncomplimentary things were being said about Lincoln, 
the great men who contended with him for the nomination were logically 


standing by the candidate. Such men as Sumner, Seward, Chase, Clay, 
Greeley, and many others of that kind of people took the stump for 

The election came off the 6th of November. Out of the total of 303 
electoral votes, Lincoln received 180. But there were fifteen states that 
did not give him an electoral vote, and in ten states he did not receive 
a single popular vote. Lincoln received in Illinois 172,161 votes; 
Douglas, 160,215; Bell, 4,913; Breckenridge, 2,401. Yates was elected 
governor over Allen, the Democratic candidate, by some 13,000 votes. 

Both houses of the legislature were Republican. 

The legislature met Monday, January 7, 1861, and organized by elect- 
ing Shelby M. Cullom speaker of the lower house. This was the first 
time that the Democrats did not control one or both branches of the leg- 
islature. Governor Wood, the retiring executive, reported that the state 
debt had decreased during the four years preceding nearly $3,000,000. 
On the 14th of January Richard Yates was inaugurated governor for 
four years. His inaugural address was a vigorous statement of the views 
of the Republican party relative to the preservation of the union. After 
the election of Lyman Trumbull, United States senator, and the passage 
of a few bills, the legislature adjourned. 


Abraham Lincoln was born three miles from Hodgensville, in La Rue 
county, Kentuck